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Paris Club refund: Wike asks EFCC to probe Benue gov

Barely one week after he called for the imposition of a state of emergency in Benue State, over what he described as the state government’s show of incapability in handling security matters, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to probe Governor Samuel Ortom over the use of Paris Club refund allocation.

This is coming at a time Wike has awarded contracts for the reconstruction of two roads in Benue.

The Rivers State governor had, last week, called for the declaration of state of emergency in Benue State, following the killing of about 52 people in a market in Zaki Biam, Benue State. He had justified his call, saying the state government had shown ineptitude in tackling security problem.

Speaking to Daily Sun on the Paris Club refunds allocation, Wike said despite the amount of money disbursed to Benue, the state government had not done much to cater to the needs of the people, hence the need for EFCC investigation.

“The EFCC should look into the Paris Club refund allocation to Benue State because there is paucity of infrastructure in the state. The governor should be asked to account for the money and other allocations he has received in nearly two years in office,” he said.

He said Benue people are suffering “because they don’t have dividends of democracy.”

Wike said it was because of the concern for the suffering of the Benue people and respect as well as value he has for elder statesmen from the state that he has elected to reconstruct Makurdi-Naka-Adoka road and Aliade-Oju-Obarike-Ito-Otukpo road in Benue State.

According to him, the contracts would cost him N4 billion, revealing that the roads’ “bill of quantity” had already been issued.

“I sympathise with the suffering of Benue people. I value and respect the likes JS Tarka, Apar Aku, George Akume, Victor Malu and David Mark, all prominent indigenes of the state. That’s why I am financing the reconstruction of the roads. I think there is need for a probe of the finances of the state.”
The Sun, March 27, 2017

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