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The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the reimbursement of funds expended on federal roads by some state governments.
Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed revealed this while briefing State House correspondents on the outcome of this week’s virtual cabinet meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buahri.
The total sum to be reimbursed to five states is N148,141,987,161.25.
The benefitting states include Cross River, N18,394,737,608.85, Ondo N7,822,147,577.08, Osun N2,468,938,876.78, Bayelsa N38,040,564,783.40 and Rivers N78,953,067,518.29.
He further said that the council also warned that henceforth, there will be no reimbursement should any state government venture into such projects without approval from the federal government.
“You will recall that in 2016, 36 states of the federation sent a very huge bill to the federal government, asking for compensation for money that they have expended on federal roads.
“This prompted Mr. President to set up a committee to go and verify the claims of these 36 states, whether indeed these projects were actually constructed, were they completed, in line with the federal government standards.
“At the end of that exercise by an inter-ministerial committee, chaired by the Minister of Works and Housing but also had Ministers of Education, Transportation, Finance, Minister of State Works, Director General, Bureau for Public Procurement BPP and Permanent Secretary Cabinet office as members.
“At the end of that exercise, the committee recommended that the federal government should refund N550,364,297.31 billion to 31 of the 36 states, after they were convinced that, yes indeed, the projects were completed and there were federal government roads. But the claims of five other states Cross River, Rivers, Ondo, Bayelsa and Osun failed on the grounds that they did not do proper documentation and the committee felt they needed proper documentation.
“So, the committee went back with a new term of reference to ensure that the claims of the five states were in order, that is why the BPP is on the committee. So at the end of the exercise, the committee now reported that the five states – Cross River with 20 roads and one bridge will get a refund of N18,394,737,608.85, Ondo with six roads to get a refund of N7,822,147,577.08, and Osun with two roads and one bridge to get a refund of N2,468,938,876.78.
“Others are Bayelsa with five roads and one bridge is to get a refund of N38,040,564,783.40 and Rivers with three roads and three flyovers bridges is to get a refund of N78,953,067,518.29,” he said.
Mohammed said the committee confirmed that the roads and the bridges, that not only were they completed, they are in substantial good form, adding that some of the bridges and roads were built about 10 years ago.
The Information Minister said 31 states were earlier paid the sum of over N500 billion.
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