Benjamin Nworie in Abakaliki
Contrary to the widespread agitations for Nigeria to be restructured, Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, wednesday strongly opposed the agitation, insisting that the state was not yet economically viable to seek independence.
The governor also noted that he was neither in support of the agitation for Biafra nor the call for restructuring because the two proposals were not going to benefit the state as a people.
Umahi stated this at the Government House, Abakaliki, while responding to the presentation of a Consultant on Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), Dr. Mike Abani, during the state executive council meeting.
He maintained that the state was not yet ripe to clamour for restructuring or Biafra because the state totally depends on the federal allocation; investors are not coming into the state and the internally generated revenue (IGR) is paltry.
According to him, “When the issue of Biafra or restructuring is discussed, my heart jumps because Ebonyi State is not ripe for any. Ask yourself, what is it that we are producing? We totally depend on the federal government for allocation. Investors are not coming into the state and our IGR is nothing to write home about, because the idea of an investor is, supposing the allocation that comes from the centre stops, how do I get back my money”?
The governor however, admitted that the people were over taxed but regrettably, they are going into private pockets of individuals including members of his executive council.
But he promised that those involved since 2014 would be compelled to refund the funds in no time soon.
He expressed optimism that the new measures being put to work would end the problem of IGR leakages in the state and assist his administration in fighting corruption.