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Confab Adjourns To August 4 To Approve Final Report

CONFAB Chairman, Justice Kutigi

The plenary session of the National Conference drew to a close on Monday following completion of debate and adoption of resolutions arising from reports of 20 committees that considered critical issues arising from the convocation of the Conference.

Akinyemi and Kutigi

Akinyemi and Kutigi

Conference Chairman and former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Idris Kutigi, said the next plenary session would be on August 4, 2014 when delegates would reassemble to consider and approve the final reports of the Conference for presentation to the Federal Government.

Specifically on Monday, Conference formally adopted the Report of the Committee on Devolution of Power but without conclusive decision on the vital issue of derivation principle and what percentage should be paid mineral producing areas.

After a five-hour closed doors meeting by the Consensus Group of the National Conference, delegates agreed to maintain the 13 per cent status quo on derivation.

They however proposed that President Goodluck Jonathan should set up a Technical Committee to decide on the appropriate percentage for oil producing states and areas destroyed by insurgency in the country.

This position of the Confab falls short of the expectations of the South South that the region would at least get a five percent increase in derivation from the present 13 per cent.

They have been agitating for an increase to at least 18 per cent.

Speaking on the position of the Consensus Group, the Chairman of Conference, retired Justice Idris Kutigi, said President Jonathan should set up technical committee to decide on the appropriate percentage for oil producing states and areas destroyed by insurgency in the country.

After the pronouncement of the Consensus Group’s resolution by Kutigi, delegates expressed divergent views on the position.

A South South activist, Ann Kio Briggs, expressed dissatisfaction with resolution of the Conference.

Briggs said it failed to address the problem of the Niger Delta people who have been clamouring for an increase in derivation to oil producing states.

Also, a former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Olusegun Osoba, said a technical committee will in the best position to determine the exact percentage of derivation that will go to oil producing states in the country.

Osoba added that the recommendations of the conference, if implemented, will go along way in developing the country.


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