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Yuguda demands new allocation formula

By The Citizen
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Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi state has enjoined the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) to evolve a new revenue allocation formula for the three tiers of government that will not only be fair and just but stand the test of time.

The evolution of such desired revenue formula, the Governor observed, becomes necessary in the quest for Nigerians to have a united and prosperous nation, which their fore fathers have laboured to build.

Yuguda, in a keynote address to the North-east zonal public hearing on the review of revenue allocation formula for the country held in Bauchi, recalled that the formula has been a topic of debate since the Phillipson Commission in 1946.

The Governor said the Commission has been empowered to from time to time review the revenue allocation and principles in operation to conform to changing realities as the need and circumstances arise.

He explained that government is obliged to provide services and ensure security of citizenry, which, among others, include protection of lives and property, maintenance of law and order, which are feasible only with commensurate resources.

Yuguda, who was represented by his deputy, Alhaji Sagir Aminu Saleh, said the desire for local discretion and devolution of power is seen as a better vehicle for promoting improved governance, development and accountability.

The Governor also observed that the burden, which states and local governments have had to bear in terms of provision of services not under the concurrent list, has been unprecedented in recent times.

He stated: 'While fiscal federalism bears with it a potential for disagreement, an agreed formula for revenue allocation will provide a significant part of a settlement and lead to the peaceful administration of a federation.'

Yuguda further stated that the burden with which the two tiers of governments have had to contend with over the years has made the need for a review of the revenue allocation inevitable.

He noted that despite its highest rate of child and maternal mortalities, the North-east zone of the country had to contend with challenges of environmental and climatic hazards that include desertification, floods and erosion, among others – problems that have in recent times been compounded by security challenges.

On his part, RMAFC Chairman, Engr. Elias Mbam said that interests and contributions received from stakeholders would assist the commission in coming up with a new allocation formula that will reflect the wishes of the majority of Nigerians and accelerate the socio-economic development of the country.

All the six states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe were well represented in the zonal public hearing for the review of the national revenue allocation formula.