Sylvester Idowu in Warri
The Delta State House of Assembly has approved the N7.9 billion loan request of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.
Okowa had asked the state House of Assembly for the approval to borrow N3 billion to finance priority road projects and additional N4.9 billion to refinance ailing Delta Transport Company, (Delta Line).
The lawmakers, who resumed plenary Wednesday after a break occasioned by the 2019 general election, approved the request of the governor, following a resolution of the House.
The Speaker, Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori read the letter of the governor for the credit facility at the plenary.
According to the letter, Okowa said there was urgent need for the state government to support some of its road contractors, in accessing financing to aid accelerated execution of critical projects before the onset of the rainy season.
Okowa said the request had become expedient considering the almost N3 billion drop in Federation Accounts receipt in January 2009 when compared to December 2018, which had hindered planned disbursement to the contractors .He said that most of the contractors were already on site and have generated payment certificate for works already executed, which were yet to be defrayed .
The governor said the funds were required to make progress in the relevant project execution, adding that the state executive council at its meeting of February 5, 2019, considered and approved that the state government should support certain contractors for the state’s critical priority projects .
According to the letter, the governor said in obtaining the short term loan facilities amounting to only N3 billion from Zenith Bank with the state government bearing the costs associated with the facilities as requested by the contractors.