Rivers Assembly grants govt’s request to deduct 5% from 60% excess crude refund
Rivers State House of Assembly has granted request by Rivers State Government that the state liabilities owed to the Federal Government be netted off from the receipt due to the state for a refund.
The House also granted that the government should pay five per cent consultant fees and that the amount be deducted at source and paid to the consultant already engaged by the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF).
At the resumption of plenary yesterday, the Speaker of the House, Ikuinyi Owaji-Ibani, informed members that the state governor, Nyesom Wike, sent a correspondence seeking the approval of a resolution from the last meeting of the NGF on the excess crude refund.
The governor, in the letter, noted that as a condition for reconciliation and subsequent refund, the NGF resolved that there should be documentation and five per cent deduction as consultancy fees for consultants and the House of Assembly resolution.
The letter reads in part: “Nigeria Governors forum in her meeting held on Thursday, March 30, 2023 deliberated on outstanding 60 per cent refunds to states of the excess crude account and royalties accounts, reconciliation and proposal that states’ liabilities being netted therefore. based on the above, the following wrote to the state requesting documentation to conclude the reconciliation and refund process.
“This documentation requires the consent of a five per cent deduction as consultancy fees for consultants and the House of Assembly resolution approving this development, the copy is herein attached.”
The Leader of the House, Martins Amaewhule, a member representing Obio/Apkor I Constituency, argued that the request is a step in the right direction.
He said, if granted, the state liabilities owed to the Federal Government, having been netted off from the receipt due to the state for a refund, will lessen the debt burden of the state and will give government more money to carry out projects.
The Speaker called for votes and those for the request were 14, while those against, nil.
Consequently, the speaker of the House declared that having listened to the contributions of members, the House has resolved and granted the request of the governor as sent to the House.
He urged the clerk to ensure the resolution is ready as quickly as possible for onward transmission to the state governor.
The house adjourned till April 25.