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Govs: We’ve received N2trn as refunds of Paris Club, others

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Govs: We’ve received N2trn as refunds of Paris Club, others

Governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the release of about N2 trillion to the 36 states of the federation.

The money was given to the states in form of restructuring of loans, refunds on federal roads and refunds for Paris Club.
This gesture was, among others, to assist the states in the payment of salaries, pensions and gratuities.

“Furthermore, we used the opportunity to thank Mr. President in all he has been doing and all the successes recorded in the areas which he campaigned upon and, by extension, our party which are security, economy, and accountability.

“We are quite happy with his support for states where close to N2 trillion was given to states in form of restructuring of loans, refunds on federal roads, refund for Paris Club, which has helped encourage economic activities in the states, payment of salaries, payment of pensions, payment of gratuities and overall investment by infrastructural spending.

“We are also appreciative of increased investment in agriculture which has been because of conscious decision to support agriculture as a way out of economic challenges and provide economic growth,” Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi told reporters.
The governors, who met with the President at the Presidential Villa, Abuja under the aegis of the APC Governors Forum, said they did not discuss the issue of appointment of new ministers with him during their meeting.

Since inauguration for a second term in office on 29th May 2019, President Buhari is yet to name his cabinet. The governors, who are political stakeholders, are expected to make input into who emerges from their respective states as members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

Speaking to State House Correspondents who sought to know whether the issue of ministerial list featured during their discussion, Bagudu simply replied: “No. It is an executive decision.”
The Kebbi governor told reporters that they were in the Villa to thank the President for the confidence he has in the progressive governors which led to the victory recorded by the party in the election of principal officers at the National Assembly.

The anointed candidates of the APC were elected on Tuesday last week for the positions of four principal officers in the National Assembly including the Senate President, Deputy Senate President, Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Deputy Speaker.

Bagudu, who is also Chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum, said that the meeting was to thank the President on the various interventions to state governments, including the Paris Club refunds, the budget support fund which is in form of loan and the refund for money expended by states on federal roads.

He said: “This morning (yesterday), Mr. President graciously granted audience to Progressive Governors’ Forum. We came to congratulate him on the National Assembly elections and thank him for the confidence he had in the governors who participated actively in all the processes that led to the emergence of Senator Ahmad Lawan as Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege as Deputy Senate President, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila as Speaker (House of Representatives) and Hon. Ahmed Wase as Deputy Speaker.

“We also congratulate Mr. President that despite drop in incomes, the value for money that he insists upon has begun to pay off in terms of more security across the country even though some challenges still remain, he is working hard on that with sincerity.

“Last and not least, we offer to work with Mr. President continuously to ensure that we increase economic performance, security of our country and social cohesion.”

Bagudu said that the Progressive Governors’ Forum used the occasion to thank President Buhari for celebrating the Democracy Day which was consistent with the promise he made, adding that it was a major element reflective of his democratic ideals in ensuring that an issue which was so important to many Nigerians has been finally addressed in a way.

He said: “Well, we as progressive governors will push so that that legislation and cooperation between states and the Federal Government will intensify, we will be more active during investments in all areas that can provide employment and incomes will rapidly increase. We will collaborate more to ensure that security is enhanced, particularly when it involves state borders.”

Present at the meeting were Chairman of Nigeria’s Governors Forum (NGF) and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, whose colleagues sang birthday song for on his 44th birthday.

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