The Rivers State Governor and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, has signed into law the State Appropriation bill for the current year.
Signing the appropriation bill of N338 billion at Council Chambers in the Government House, Port Harcourt on Monday, Governor Amaechi said his administration would continue to be purposeful in expending the state budget.
According to him, his administration have been very frugal in spending state funds on meeting the needs of the people of the state.
He said: “We will implement this budget until May 29. Nobody can say that we did not perform, from education to health, when people say our legacy is education, I laugh. The health centres that we have built all over the state are there as projects that will be remembered by all. The roads, if you remember when we took over, how narrow our roads were and how many roads we had in the state.”
Amaechi noted that not only had he been frugal, he could account for how money was spent on various projects.
Amaechi thanked members of the Rivers State House of Assembly for being good partners towards the attainment of success by his administration.
He said: “Let me thank the House for the opportunity to sign one more budget before I depart from office. I’m excitedly looking forward to departing from this office because it is extremely tedious, but I must thank you that all efforts at breaking down the House and Government were not successful. You can see that my brother and friend in Ebonyi is battling with same people, the same people who don’t obey laws are battling him in Ebonyi. They tried it in Adamawa in the same illegal manner, they removed the governor. Here, they were not successful. Let me on behalf of the Rivers people, my family, that is, my wife and children, thank all members of the Rivers State House of Assembly.”
Amaechi urged Rivers State people to vote for the All Progressives Congress governorship candidate, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, in the forthcoming election and rescue the state from the hands of those he described as intending hijackers of the state treasury.
He blasted the Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidate in the state, Chief Nyesom Wike, for his corrupt tendencies over the years, describing him as unfit for governorship in Rivers State.
He said: “I don’t have mansions like they have. They have mansions even behind the Government House and they are not ashamed. I have not done a contract neither have I taken Rivers State Government money and refused to execute the job. I have said here that Nyesom Wike has the contract to do the road project inside the stadium, he has abandoned the contract, he has taken N3.5billion Naira and abandon the job. He has not addressed that and then he’s accusing us. That is, I’m talking about abandoned contracts.
“I have told Rivers people that the road from Eneka to Rukpokwu was done by Nyesom Wike, the road is completely in a state of disrepair, that same man is going to Rumuagholu and say he will do road. He wants me to name the companies that he used to do the roads? The worst thing that can happen to a people is for the governor to be a contractor. The moment the governor is a contractor then everything is finished. That means what you are seeing is an attempt to hijack the treasury of Rivers State and we would not allow that. Please go home and campaign for an APC government, go home and campaign for Buhari.”
Before presenting the state appropriation bill for the governor’s assent, the Leader of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Chidi Lloyd, expressed the satisfaction of the House in the amount allocated to both capital and recurrent expenditure.
Lloyd said the government’s capital expenditure of N219 billion and recurrent expenditure of N119 billion was appealing to the state assembly, which earlier passed the budget after a close study.
Speaking with Government House correspondents on the budget, the state Commissioner for Finance, Dr. Chamberlain Peterside, said the Amaechi administration would continue to pay salaries and pensions and conduct the business of government within the appropriation law.