Plateau Govt Uncovers N222 Billion Debt ProfileLatest News, News, News From The State Tuesday, August 11th, 2015
By Agabus Pwanagba, Jos – The Transition Committee setup by Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau state has uncovered a debt profile of over N222 billion left by the immediate past administration of the State.
This was disclosed Tuesday in Jos, the State capital, by the Chairman of the Committee and Deputy Governor, Prof. Sonny Tyoden, while presenting the committee’s report to the State’s Governor.
Tyoden said, “First, is the issue of the need to settle the discrepancy between what the State got as income and what was left at the exit of the outgone government.
“From the records, between May, 2007 and May, 2015, the sum N525.35 billion was the total income accruing to the State, statutory allocations inclusive, but the state was left with a debt of N222.3 billion by May, 2015.
He maintained “In other words, the sum of N747.65 billion could be said to have been expended on Plateau State citizens, in the last eight years.
“Looking at the State in its current condition, we are at a lost where all this money went to”, He lamented.
“The Central Bank of Nigeria remitted the sum of N2 billion to the coffers of Plateau State Government for the benefit of small and medium scale industries in the State. However, about 90 per cent of this amount which was remitted to the state on the 17th of March, 2015 was drawn in two days between 24th and 26th March, 2015, for unexplained expenditure, without a small and medium enterprise in the state benefitting from the money, yet the hand-over notes dated 29th, May, 2015, stated that the government was yet to access the fund.
The Deputy Governor added that, various sums totaling N6.1 billion were transferred from the accounts of SUBEB, SURE-P and Ministry for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, to the State Government’s accounts, without justifiable explanations on how the funds were used.
“On the 27th of May, 2015, four political appointees of a certain government agency who were not entitled to severance allowances as specified by the Revenue Mobilization and Fiscal Commission, illegally paid themselves the sum of N30million, severance allowance” the committee alleged.
The Committee urged the Governor, to study report carefully with a view to implementing the recommendations made.
Responding, Governor Lalong, said, ” I want to thank the Chairman of Committee, Prof. Sonni G. Tyoden, and all the 188 members of the Committee for painstakingly doing this great task given to them without minding the criticisms of some individuals and groups who want the usual practice to continue.
“The summary at the disposal of government is quiet revealing, particularly the abuse of civil service rules and regulations and the huge debt profile steering this government and its people in the face.
Lalong added that,” Government has deliberately allowed the submission of the report to guide it in her 5 policy thrust of redefining governance and charting a new course of affairs that will be beneficial to the people of the state. These are: Peace, Security and Good Governance, Human Capital Development and Social Welfare, Agriculture and Rural Development, Entrepreneurship and Industrialization and Physical Infrastructure and Environment”.
The Governor assured that details of the Committee’s findings would be made available to the public, to guard against misrepresentation of facts.
He further assured that government would study and commence implementation of recommendations of the report.
It would be recalled on May 7, 2015 Governor Lalong inaugurated a transition committee to study all aspects of the structure, organization and operational modalities of the former administration and advise government accordingly.
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