Insecurity: PDP to house delegates for guber primaries
– Gov Dickson Offsets N104bn Inherited Bond
The Bayelsa State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party has taken a decision to accommodate all officials of the party who are delegates in the forthcoming primaries in designated hotels in Yenagoa, the state capital for security reasons and easy access.The State chairman and secretary of the party, Chief Moses Cleopas and Godspower Keku, respectively, said that the decision was taken in line with the exemplary conduct of the national leadership of the party concerning the management of delegates in the last presidential primaries in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Cleopas and Keku said, in a statement jointly signed, that the PDP had notified all members of caucus and the 21 aspirants that the accommodation of aspirants was the responsibility of the State chapter of the party rather than any of the aspirants.The PDP leaders warned that the party would not tolerate the hijacking or kidnapping of delegates to unknown location in violation of its directives designed to enthrone order and sanity in the process of the forthcoming contest. They added that the party was against any attempt to move the delegates to locations outside Bayelsa in view of the prevailing security situation in the country.
In another development, the Bayelsa State Government, yesterday, said it had defrayed the N104 billion bond loan inherited from past administrations in the State.The Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Maxwell Ebibai, made the disclosure during the monthly transparency briefing for the months of June and July, 2019 in Yenagoa.Ebibai explained that the state government painstakingly undertook the repayment of the debt in spite of numerous financial obligations.
Cleopas and Keku stated further that it was the policy of the PDP to grant unimpeded access for all aspirants and their campaign directors to the hotels where the delegates will be quartered.The party leaders urged the delegates from the ward, local government and state levels to resist any blackmail, inducement and intimidation from any aspirant, stressing that the position on the accommodation of delegates had been adopted by the caucus and duly communicated to the aspirants.
The duo, who stated the preparedness of the party to provide a level playing ground for all the aspirants, said that the ‘party seeks the support of all aspirants in a manner agreed to by them.”Rationalising government’s decision to offset the bond debt, the Finance Commissioner, who noted that the Governor Dickson-led administration was not against deficit financing, emphasised that borrowed funds must be utilised for development purposes.
Ebibai said: “There is nothing wrong with a government deciding to do deficit financing but what is important is what we are using it for and we have put it behind us as a state.”Presenting the revenues and expenditures for the month of July, Ebibai said that in the month of June, the State recorded an internally generated revenue of N1.5 billion as against N910m in May.He noted that the gross income from the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee, (FAAC), stood at N11.6 billion, while total FAAC deductions amounted to N1.1 billion.
According to him, the statutory allocation for the month of July was N3.4 billion, derivation, N7 billion, Value Added Tax, N928 million and exchange gain differential of N23 million.He further explained that total funds available for spending was N13.4 billion, consisting of a net FAAC inflow of N10.4 billion in addition to other total receipts of N3 billion.
On outflows, the Finance Commissioner said government spent N2.4 billion on bank loans, civil servants and political appointees’ salaries came up to N3.5billion, grants to higher institutions N695 million, among other items.The Commissioner, who announced N701.5 million as balance brought forward from the month of June, put funds available as at the end of July as N399 million.
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