FG must share privatisation proceeds with states, FCT - Gov. Nyako
The Adamawa State Governor Murtala Nyako on Saturday insisted that the Presidency must make available the funds realised from the sale of Federal Government's property and companies to be shared among the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Nyako, who spoke at a dinner organised for journalists in Yola, said majority of the governors sued the Federal Government to court over the whereabouts of the funds realised from the sale of government's property within and outside the country.
'It is the 36 states and FCT that constitute what is called Federal Government of Nigeria; so whatever property that belongs to Federal Government is also the property of the states, because it is the states' territories that are used to generate revenue which we share at the end of every month,' he stated.
Nyako, who explained that the case was withdrawn for out-of-court settlement, insisted that governors would not accept any resolution outside sharing the money. 'Our constitutional responsibility as leaders is to ensure that what belongs to our people, we do everything within the ambit of the law to get it or recover it for our people irrespective of whatever name or colour others give it', he said.
The former Chief of Naval Staff (Nyako), who dismissed the insinuation in some quarters that the move was initiated by pro- Amaechi supporters to force Presidency to bow out of the political crisis rocking Rivers State, said the position of the governors on the privatisation funds should be seen as a demand for justice, transparency and accountability as stipulated by the laws of the country.
'I challenge anybody to come out with facts and figures and the projects the money realised from the privatisation of our public property within and outside the country, which runs into billions of dollars was used to execute and in which budget it was included. We cannot fold our arms and close our eyes when the constitutional rights of our people are being violated; that will be the greatest disservice on our part as leaders of our various states,' he maintained.
The governor also urged the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to stand up to the challenges of its constitutional responsibilities by caging those behind peddling of hard and dangerous drugs, alleging a calculated plan by some groups or individuals to destroy the North through deployment of massive hard drugs to the region.
According to Nyako, the rising cases of hard drugs in the North have become a source of concern, considering the negative effect of those drugs on the youth, whom he described as the backbone of any community that wants to develop.
He urged his counterparts in other northern states not to handle the issue with kid gloves, pointing out that the silent way to destroy a nation is to destroy the youth who are the future leaders. 'Some of us are privileged to be governors, senators or president today because our elders and leaders protected us from anything that could be harmful to our future. So, it is our responsibility to do the same to the youth of today to protect the country or region tomorrow,' he stated.
The governor, who described journalists as the custodian and pillar of democracy in the country, urged them to adhere strictly to the rules and laws of the profession.