Disaster Management: Nigerians should demand more from state govts – Presidency

Gov Samuel Ortom of Benue State. [Photo credit: The Nation]
Gov Samuel Ortom of Benue State. [Photo credit: The Nation]

Following recent cases of flood in various states, the presidency has asked Nigerians to demand more from state governments on the judicious use of the Ecological Fund.

According to a statement by the presidency, President Muhammadu Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu, said this at the weekend on ‘Hannu Da Yawa’, a programme on FRCN Kaduna. He said states take a large chunk from the ecological fund and Nigerians should demand more from them.

“The largest chunk of the Fund goes to the states and local governments. Every month, states and local governments receive 1.4 per cent from the Federation Account as Ecological Fund, compared to the federal government’s share of 1 per cent.

“From the 1 per cent the FG gets, NEMA takes 20 per cent for its operation,” he said.

The presidential aide noted that lately, disaster management in the country is gradually being ceded to the federal government by other tiers of government.

“Whenever there is an emergency from natural or man-made disasters, all you hear is ‘where is Buhari, what is he doing? What happens with the other tiers of government?”

“Nigerians, at the state and local governments, should demand transparency and accountability in the management of ecological funds by their Governors and local government chairmen.

“Without accountability by local political leaders, the federal government would continue to be the scapegoat for the failure of states and local governments to use ecological funds for the purposes they were released,” he said.

At least 16 states have had various degrees of flooding in 2017 with the most prominent being Benue that led to the displacement of thousands of people from their homes.

Although President Buhari is yet to visit Benue, PREMIUM TIMES reported how Vice President Yemi Osinbajo led a government delegation to the state and also visited the occupants of the displaced persons camp in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.

In his statement, Mr. Shehu said the Buhari administration will ensure the timely release of the Ecological Fund to states so that they can address their relevant challenges.

“The Buhari administration will under no circumstance abandon its humanitarian obligations to alleviate the distress of flood victims,” he said.

“In spite of Nigeria’s technological limitations and the paucity of funds to handle or manage large scale and complex emergencies, the APC administration will leave no stone unturned in offering succour to victims of natural disasters across the country.”

Mr. Shehu said the Presidential Committee on Flood Relief and Rehabilitation has also been mandated to step up the provision of relief infrastructure to those in need.


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  • MilitaryPolice01

    Garba Shehu has a valid point I am afraid. To most of the State Governors, the Ecological fund is meant for entertainment, diversion and lobby.

  • Arabakpura

    I am happy that the federal government has joined in calling for the devolution of powers!

  • aboki

    Nigerians called to demand for more from State Government should transcend beyond Ecological Funds considering
    a. Bail out funds
    b. Paris Club reimbursement
    c. Monthly Allocation from Federation Account
    d. I G Revenue
    The Governors are left alone unchecked concerntrating on FG on every issues instead of sharing with them.
    It’s the responsibility of State and local governments to provide
    i. Portable drinking water
    ii. Medical services
    iii. Education
    to their subjects as stipulated in the constitution.
    However our so-called activities are mute on states governors despite non performance with such funds released to them in various names.
    Some of these states also collect 13 percent derivation couples with the activities of OIL COMPANIES in their States.
    Nigeria is a 3tier government therefore the governors must respect that and start performing.
    Those WAILERS should comment please otherwise they should live PMB and FGN alone please.

    • Du Covenant

      My broda, I strongly believe Nigerians just do not know what democracy is all about. Their mentality is stuck in military regimes where all orders came from the FG. Democracy is about challenging our local elected officials with all our immediate problems. While we are all focused on Buhari who is doing his bit, the governors, LG chaimen are busy stealing and misusing all resources provided by FG to fix our local issues. We need to change our focus please..

    • Absolutely Sane

      You and Garba Sheu made a lot of sense. Let the National Orientation Agency begin work in earnest to make our people realize all these clear facts. Assuming that we are educated people will do us no good. Though we are educated people but we seem to have been carried away by some political propaganda and to some extent, the previous governments we have had had successfully changed our orientation and understanding of what democracy really is.
      God bless this administration as some truths are beginning to gain the light of the day.

  • Ikechi Jim Nnah

    Garba Shehu is making some sense. We should hold States in particular responsible to some extent. However Mr Shehu did not do his Maths right when he said the States get a larger portion, while the FG gets a mere 1%. Lets do the Maths together. States get a whooping 1.4%! wao, and the FG has a meagre 1%. Really? Now 1.4% divided by 36 +1 is 0.0003783784%. Of course, The devil like they say, is always in the details. So much so for transparency. If the FG funds NEMA with 20% of its 1%, that leaves .80%. Can Mr Shehu enlighten us on what the FG does with this? Instead of sending us chasing after Governors for the 0.0003783784% in their possession?

    Nice try sir and I am sure some apologists have bought it too. Sorry, but not all of us.

    • shola

      Every nation is challenged with unforeseeable circumstances. So,They are best advised to safe for uncontrollable circumstances with immediate effect.

  • shola

    “Nigerians at the state and local governments, should demand transparency and accountability in the management of ecological funds by their
    Governors and local government chairmen.“
    Each State in Nigeria must be compelled to publicise how much she invested from this ecological funds before asking for more.