The House of Representatives on Wednesday indicated its willingness to investigate the probable exclusion of Rivers State from the list of states to benefit from the Federal Government’s borrowings.
The lower chamber is to probe the possible omission of the oil-rich state as a beneficiary of states earmarked for projects.
This is sequel to a motion of urgent public importance by Representative Solomon Bob alleging that Rivers is the only state out of the 36 states to be left out.
The lawmaker further alleged discrimination against Rivers State which contributes enormously to the federation account.
The House has mandated its Committee on Aids and Loans to liaise with the presidency to include Rivers State in the loans if it is found to be the only state that has been excluded.
The Reps’ move is coming two days after Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike described as an act of discrimination, the alleged refusal of the Federal Government to include Rivers as one of the states that would benefit from projects, for which it was seeking fresh foreign loans to execute.
“Look at the money that Federal Government has gone to borrow from the World Bank, of all the projects in all the states, the Federal Government did not include Rivers State,” the governor said.
He explained that beyond the provision of infrastructure, his administration was seeking a law that would provide comfortable accommodation for judicial officers on retirement.
The reason, he said, was to ensure that while in service, the judicial officers can concentrate on their jobs without cutting corners and avoid corrupt practices.
He observed that there are attempts to frustrate federating states like Rivers, to actualise the constitutional provisions that empower them to harness their resources and revenues, particularly VAT.
According to Governor Wike, what the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) was doing was illegal and could be likened to robbing from the states.