BAYELSA SPENT N1.6BN ON MDGS, SSG TELLS ASSEMBLY

By NBF News
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Yenagoa - Secretary to the Bayelsa State Government, Mr. Gideon Ekeuwe, yesterday, appeared before the state House of Assembly Committee on Public Accounts, and said that the office of Millennium Development Goals, MDGs, had so far received only N1.6 billion for projects spread across the state.

The Assembly had, Tuesday, summoned the SSG to appear before it, following the probe into the controversial N3 billion MDGs allegedly expended by his office.

Ekeuwe, who was drilled for about six hours, defended the expenditures on the MDGs projects in state, saying 'we only expended N1.6 billion.'

He told newsmen that the money the state government had contributed to MDGs counterpart funding for 2008 and 2009 was approximately N1.6 billion as against the N3 billion as being claimed inĀ  some quarters.

He explained that the other counterpart share of N1.4 billion belonged to the Federal Government and had not been accessed by the state.

Ekeuwe said the meeting with the House committee was cordial, adding that it was 'a confirmation of the relationship between the legislature and the executive in the state.'

The SSG said: 'I have nothing much to say on this issue because the Committee on Public Accounts will still report back to the House on their findings and the projects are there for all to see. We had a fruitful discussion.

'There is a health centre at Azuzuama, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area; and a skill acquisition centre at Sabageria, Kolokuma-Opokuma Local Government Area, designed to boost local content capacity building, among others.'

It was learnt that files, documents and video discs, relating to MDGs projects in the state, were examined by the House Committee, headed by Mr. Sam Ateke.