Osinbajo, governors, accuse Jonathan of discriminating against 19 states in sharing of ecological funds

Ag President Yemi Osinajo at the National Economic Council Meeting in Abuja
Ag President Yemi Osinajo at the National Economic Council Meeting in Abuja

The administration of former Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan, discriminated in the sharing of ecological funds to states, a new report has shown.

An interim report submitted by the National Executive Council’s Ad-hoc committee on management of ecological fund revealed that 19 states, including Abuja, are yet to benefit from the one percent share of the Ecological Fund as stipulated by law.

NEC, an official economic platform for dialogue among the 36 state governors, the governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and other co-opted members, is chaired by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo.

The interim report, submitted by an 11-man Committee headed by Governor Nasir El-rufai of Kaduna State, gave details of how the entire Ecological Fund was utilized during Mr. Jonathan’s eta.

The Committee informed Council of the revised sharing formula of the Ecological Funds as modified, with the Federal Government getting one percent; States, 0.72 percent; and Local Government Areas, 0.60 percent.

The Committee disclosed that all States and Local Government Areas got their shares of the Fund, and that the only portion left is the Federal Government’s share of one percent.

The committee said of that FG’s one percent, (which now stands at N33.6 billion), NEMA and Great Green Wall project are statutorily entitled to 20 percent and 15 percent respectively.

Only 65 percent of the FG’s share is therefore available for sharing, it said.

The report, however, noted that there is need to establish a clear criteria for sharing that percentage of the FG share among states of the Federation.

According to the Committee, 19 states did not benefit from the fund during the Jonathan administration.

The report listed the 19 states to include Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Borno, Edo, Ekiti, Imo, Jigawa, Kano, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger and Ogun.

Others are Osun, Oyo, Rivers, Sokoto, Yobe, Zamfara, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

Other states benefitted in 2013, the report said, describing the arrangement as “discriminatory”.

Meanwhile, the sum of 13 billion naira is now available for sharing to states, since N20 billion must be left in the account for unknown national emergencies, the committee.

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Oladeinde Olawoyin reports Business & Economy, Development and Lagos Metro at PREMIUM TIMES. A First Class graduate of Mass Communication from the University of Ilorin, Ilorin, he was nominated in the journalism category of The Future Awards Africa in 2017. Aside maintaining a column titled ‘SATURDAY SATIRE’, he also writes art and culture pieces on weekends. Twitter: @Ola_deinde


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