The Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike has on Thursday 7th October, 2021 called for an upward review in revenue allocation to states and LGAs to encourage them build their potentials.
The governor said this in the course of his keynote address while declaring open the South-South Zonal Public Hearing on the review of the existing revenue allocation, NAN reports.
The said event was organised by the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) in the Rivers State Cspital City, Port Harcourt. Wike was represented by the Deputy Governor, Mrs Ipalibo Banigo.
In his words, “current revenue allocation formula, an outcome of the military fiat of 1992 has gone 22 years of democratic dispensation, obviously could not meet the present realities’’ in the nation.”
He also acknowledged that the federal government was overburdened and overloaded hence could not efficiently deliver a federal system as expected.
He said that the states were undertaking so much in security and logistics for security as well as mass infrastructure, adding that in Rivers, 10 overhead bridges were being built.
According to him, we envisage that we have a city that has so much traffic in the future.
“Apart from that, we have other infrastructures going on in our communities, in all our 23 local government areas, bridges, jetties, tertiary institutions and all that.
“It is just only fair that the federal government should reduce its loads and the allocations to the federal government should be reduced,’’ he said.
Wike, who earlier received Chief Elias Mbam, the Chairman of the Commission, in his office during a courtesy call, urged the commission to reduce the federal government allocation to 40 per cent.
He also called for an increase to the states to 40 per cent as well as the local governments to 20 per cent.
“In that way, most of the responsibilities that belong to the federal government will now be taken away and given to the states,’’ he said.
Wike stated that the current revenue sharing formula of 52.68 per cent to federal government, 26.72 per cent to states and 20.60 per cent to states was not acceptable.
He noted that the 1992 population figure, public school enrolment, public hospital bed spaces, land mass were used as formulas for the revenue allocation.
The governor called for a more equitable formula that would take into consideration the current population figure, enrolment in private schools and the number of bed spaces in private hospitals.
According to him, using the same formula of 1992 as a basis for revenue allocation in this country is so unfortunate.
However, he lauded the commission for shouldering the revenue allocation review, saying it was well overdue.