The Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, has approved N18 billion to Yobe State Government for five major roads which they undertook on behalf of the federal government.
This is even as it said that about N477 billion has been refunded in the first tranche of reimbursement to many states.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed who briefed State House Correspondents on behalf of the ministry of works and housing disclosed that in the first tranche, Edo got N30 billion, Lagos N106 billion, Niger N333 million, Ogun N37 billion, Delta 56 billion, Ebonyi N10 billion, Enugu N12 billion, Jigawa N10 billion and Ekiti N10 billion.
He said: “the last memo by the Honorable Minister of works and housing is memo seeking Council’s approval for the reimbursement of the funds that were certified recommended for refund for the Yobe State government.
“You’ll call that when this administration came in, many states made requests that under the previous administrations they undertook construction of roads and bridges, which were supposed to be federal government roads and bridges and they actually asked federal government to reimburse them. Upon which the federal government set up inter-ministerial committee made up of ministries of works and housing, transport, education and the like. And they came up with recommendations.
“I think it’s important to say that well, it is true that we are just reporting this particular memo, which is a refund being sought by Yobe government. The Yobe government is asking for the sum of N18,663,843,009 as reimbursement for five federal roads, which they rehabilitated or constructed.
“A Committee was set up to inspect the claim and were actually found to be true. They were reviewed, and then out of the N20 billion they asked for, they certified N18 billion as refund due to Yobe State for undertaking the construction and rehabilitation of these federal roads on behalf of the federal government.”
Mohammed said this is not the first time the federal government has reimbursed states for jobs done contrary to claims by some opposition states.
He said: “But this is not the first time, since 2015 we made refunds to about 24 states if my records are correct. And I want to put on record here that but for the benevolence of this administration many states would have sunk under.
“You remember that by the time we came in about 27 states were unable to pay salaries, it took this federal government to really bail them out so that they could pay salaries and arrears. And when the price of crude crashed, this same government gave each state what is called a bailout. And some of the states today that complain that they have never benefited from the federal government especially the PDP states, are the ones that have taken the lion’s share of this reimbursement.
“Because records I have here shows that Akwa Ibom got the sum of N61 billion from this federal government for works they undertook on behalf of the federal government especially before we came in.
“Rivers got over N100 billion which shows that this administration, it does not matter whether you are PDP or APC or Labour or APGA, this administration looks at you as a Nigerian and when the largesse are being distributed, it does not favour you just because you are from APC states or from a friendly state.
“In the first tranche of this reimbursement about N477 billion was refunded to many states. Edo got N30 billion, Lagos N106 billion, Niger N333 million, Ogun N37 billion, Delta 56 billion, Ebonyi N10 billion. Enugu N12 billion, Jigawa N10 billion, Ekiti 10 billion. And this although the first tranche.
“Second tranche were the last trench and I think if I remember, I think Yobe and two other states were supposed to be in the next batch. We have Yobe which was gotten to today, N18 billion for works which they undertook on behalf of the federal government.”