OrderPaperToday – The Senate has approved a N148bn refund to five states for road projects done on behalf of the Federal Government.
Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari addressed had weeks ago a letter to the National Assembly requesting approval for the promissory notes.
The request was then referred to the committee on Local and Foreign debts.
Presenting the report on the N148bn refund request on Tuesday during plenary, the Chairman of the committee, Clifford Ordia, gave a breakdown of the amount to each of the states as follows:
Bayelsa State – N38,404,564,783.40
Cross River State – N18,394,732,608.85
Ondo State – N7,822,147,577.08
Osun State – N4,567,456,673.63
Rivers State – N78,953,067,518.29
In his presentation, the senator said following people were invited by the Committee in approving the request: Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Finance, Commissioners of Finance and Works in Bayelsa, Cross Rivers, Osun, Rivers, Ondo states.
According to him, some states like Cross River, Rivers, Bayelsa and Ondo States embarked on executing the road projects as far back as 2005 to date.
The committee thereafter requested copies of approval by the federal government through the ministry of works and housing for the execution of projects in the state, copies of contract agreement between the affected states and contractors that handled the projects, copies of clearance by the BPP and evidence of payment by the state governments to the contractors.
“Series of visits were carried out by the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing on all federal roads completed by the States and ascertained that the quality off work done met the required standard,” the senator added.
As a result, the committee recommended that the senate approves the request. It was adopted.
In his remarks, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, commended Buhari’s administration for seeking the N148bn refund to mostly Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led states.
Lawan said: “If you look at the list of states, only two are APC states and they have the least refund. This is fantastic and remarkable leadership by the federal government because this shows tolerance and leadership by this administration.”