It was another shocking revelation of observers of national development as the Federal Ministry of Finance has declared that in 2013 alone, the Rivers State Government received the sum of N256.7billion from the Federation Account.
The Rivers State governor, Rotimi Amaechi had reacted to the claims that the state got 56 billion naïra from the excess crude account by explaining that the money was from the Federation Account.
The Federal Ministry of Finance, in a statement by Paul C. Nwabuikwu, Special Adviser to the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, however, said “the total amount which Rivers State has received from the Federation Account between January and October 2013 is N257.6 billion, which is the second highest among the states, of which the N56.2 billion from the Excess Crude Account is a part.
“It is a fact that Rivers State received N56.2 billion from the Excess Crude Account which His Excellency identified as the Federation Account. Of course, the money is taken from the Excess Crude Account and put into the Federation Account before being shared. That is the standard procedure. The total amount that the states receive from the Federation Account is far in excess of what they get from the Excess Crude Account,” the statement noted.
While noting that Governor Amaechi wants “to engage in a politicised debate on the management of the economy, the Federal Government, the statement said, prefers to focus on facts.
The statement thanked the governor “for at least admitting that he received N56.2 billion,” adding that, “We also commend him for accepting that there was no intention by the Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala not to sign the Water Resources loan from the African Development Bank.
“Please recall that these were the only two issues that he previously raised in his well-publicised comments,” the Finance Ministry said.
Wike says no previous administration has demonstrated more commitment to education than Jonathan’s administration
Supervising Minister of Education, Barr. Ezenwo Nyesom Wike has declared that the Jonathan administration, more than any other administration in the past, has demonstrated consistent commitment to the transformation of Nigeria through the education sector.
Declaring open the 2013 strategic planning workshop of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund in Abuja on Tuesday, Barr. Wike said the administration recognizes that the future success of Nigeria is dependent on transforming her citizens into assets for the society.
He said: “Funding of education is one of the focal areas of the 4-year strategic plan for the improvement of the education sector. We are therefore focused on ensuring that we have strong institutions to support our educational establishments in the area of infrastructure and learning resources”.
The minister pointed out that the administration has strengthened the Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, to work critically on basic education, while TETFund focuses on tertiary education.
“We must explore every opportunity to ensure that our tertiary institutions are in position to produce world class quality graduates with the relevant skills and competences for global competitiveness and national development. This is evident in our demonstrated efforts to rehabilitate and re-position education in the last three years”, he said.
The Education Minister noted that in 2011, the TETFund interventions to Universities was N395million each, while in 2013 it increased to N646milion for each University. For the Polytechnics, he said the interventions to each Polytechnic rose from N240million in 2011 to N443million in 2013, while for Colleges of Education the interventions have risen from N190million in 2011 to N390million in 2013.
In his remarks, Chairman of TETFund, Dr Musa Babayo described TETfund as a brand that has completely transformed tertiary education in Nigeria through funding of infrastructural and academic development projects.
Chairman, House Committee on Education, Mr Aminu Suleiman while praising the Federal Government on its achievements in the utilization of funds under TETFund, stated that the House of Representatives will embark on specific oversight visits to projects in Tertiary institutions.
Highpoint of the occasion was the presentation of letters of allocation to TETFund benefitting institutions by Barr. Wike.
Special Assistant (Media) to Supervising Minister of Education.