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Rivers Assembly Okays N10b Loan For Wike

The Rivers State House of Assembly, on Friday, passed a resolution authorising the state Governor, Nyesom Wike, to obtain a N10 billion loan from the Excess Crude Account (ECA).

The approval, which was made through voice vote by the lawmakers present at the sitting, was in view of a letter of request from the governor to the House through the Speaker.

The letter dated April 5, 2016, said the loan when obtained would be used to fund some development projects in the state.

“You are aware of the huge infrastructure development challenge and our efforts to address the situation. Since we came on board, we have not only remobilised all contractors handling major road sites, but have also awarded new contracts for the construction and reconstruction of new roads and other projects.

“We have also advertised for tenders for the Bori-Saakpenwa road, the Obiri Ikwerre-Airport by-pass, while the contracts for the comprehensive rehabilitation of eleven secondary schools and some of the dilapidated general hospitals are also due for award.

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“However, our major constraint is inadequate resources, which is worsened by shrinking returns from the Federation Account.

“On the Strength of the above, it is my desire to obtain a Ten Billion (N10,000,000,000.00) loan facility from the Excess Crude Account to continue funding our numerous development projects. The loan, which attracts a single interest of nine per cent and 20 years repayment period, is quite favourable to the reality of the state’s economy,” the letter read in part.

In their various contributions, lawmakers supported the loan saying it would facilitate the govenor’s drive to develop the state.

Hon. Opurum Iruanya, representing Etche I, submitted that the road projects embarked by the governor has yielded positive results and called on the House to approve the loan.

Hon. Deeya Barine representing Khana I, argued that “I’m gladdened that the Bori-Saakpenwa road is one of the projects that this loan is meant for and I know it would open the gateway to Ogoniland. I also support the loan because all the projects highlighted there; rehabilitation of schools and rehabilitation of general hospitals are worth the value for the loan.

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Rt. Hon Dabotoru Dima, Speaker, said the loan was worth it, considering the percentage interest rate and the projects for which it would be used for.

Eight lawmakers including the Speaker were present at the sitting. The House later adjourned sine die.