Edo Refutes Wike’s Claim of Receiving 13% Derivation Payment from FG
•Says Oshiomhole received N1trn in eight, left N160bn debt
Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
Contrary to the disclosure of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State that the federal government has paid all outstanding 13 per cent Derivation Funds due to the oil producing states in the Niger Delta, Edo State government yesterday said it had received only N2.1 billion in three tranches of N700 million out of N28 billion due to the state.
The state Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Mr. Joseph Eboigbe, who announced this at a press conference in Benin, explained that, “In respect to the 13 per cent derivation refund currently making the waves, it was the Commissioners of Finance in Nigeria under the aegis of FAAC especially those from the oil producing states spotted the fact that there was an anomaly in respect of the federal government spending money from crude oil and gas sales and not taking out derivation so the work was done and a total of about one trillion naira was established as due to the oil producing states.”
According to Eboigbe, “It went through the whole process and the FEC approved it and a methodology for repayment as approved by RMFAC and they now agreed on what will be due to each state.
“Edo State share of that figure was N28 billion, it is a small figure out of the on trillion but that’s what got to us. What was also approved was the way and manner this money will get to the states.
“The net amount will come to each state over five years; each year, you will have quarterly remittance which means four releases each year over five years. This disbursement was to start this year but some states went to court to restrain the government so the releases now started in October which is just last month.
“By the time they started the releases, Edo State got N700 million per quarter, and this is verifiable in our bank account.
“What we have got is three quarterly releases so far that is what has come into the state coffers and it is verifiable, it is in the bank, office of the accountant general has the records so our share was N28 billion net, it is to be distributed five years and that will be 20 quarterly distributions three has come so far.”
Corroborating the disclosure by the state Commissioner for Budget and Planning, his counterpart in the Ministry of Communication and Orientation, Mr. Chris Nekhihare said, “You will agree with me that we have people who have religiously used these resources, we are not a rich state but this government has judiciously used its resources, but we are rich in human capital development, we are rich in people who are able to manage our resources in such a way that we are able to get the major benefits.”
He said ex-governor Adams Oshiomhole received N1 trillion in his eight years as governor and left a debt of N160 billion for the state.
“The reason why he (Wike) said it is because elections are coming in February, otherwise it is in public knowledge, the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) is there, Ministry of Finance is there, journalists have the statistics, they were not new information so the man just said to cause tension,” he added.