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Osanebi Presides Assembly Plenary, Approves Facility To Ease Financial Crunch

By Agbanashi Obinne
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In her session today, the Delta State House of Assembly, approved a N14.16B Federal Government facility, aimed at ameliorating funding and financial challenge for Delta State.

The plenary session which was presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Friday Ossai Osanebi, considered a letter from the State Governor, Sen. Ifeanyi Okowa seeking the House approval for a facility to enable the state government bridge some critical funding gaps in connection with the financing of infrastructural development projects.

The facility is a Federal Government arrangement to support states in meeting their obligations at this critical period of our nation's history.

In the letter, the Governor said : " the facility is to enable the state government bridge some critical funding gaps in connection with the financing of infrastructural development projects".

The Governor said that the facility will attract an interest of 9% with a moratorium of one year for a ten year tenure.

According to the Governor, Delta State has met the conditions for the offer adding that the disbursement plan will entail the release of three tranches of N1.39 Billion over a period of three months to be followed by N1.11 Billion over nine months .

The conditionalities of the offer form the provisions for a fiscal sustainability plan ( FSP) which the state is necessarily required to submit before 30th June, 2016.

Governor Okowa further informed the house that some of the commitments demanded by the plan, includes improved accountability and transparency, rationalization of public expenditure and improved public financial management. All of which will entail such specific actions as implementation of centralized Treasury Single Account Biometric Capture of all State Civil Servants and Domestication of the Physical Responsibility Act.

On the acceptance of the Governor's letter by the House, Rt. Hon. Osanebi called for debate.

The majority leader, Hon. Tim Owhefere in his contribution said the Governor's letter was clear and self explanatory but it was proper for Deltans to be properly informed while the state needed the facility.

He added that the good old days are not longer here and that apart from payment of salaries, there was need to embark on infrastructural development and meet contractual agreements.

The house unanimously approved the facility without further debate.