Gov. Ugwuanyi fires the first shot

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The other day, apparition of Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission(RMAFC) was cited lurking around some state capitals on alleged missionary duty of renegotiating revenue allocation formulae suited for Nigerian contemporary realities. Earlier before, the said commission announced her interest of embarking on nationwide consultation, on revenue sharing in line with her constitutional functions which among others are to “review from time to time, the revenue allocation formula and principles in operation to ensure conformity with changing realities”. What is not in issue is that, this realities were overwhelmingly present at the pre and post establishment of the commission far back 1989. Sincerity, beckons parochial approach in addressing matters of inflammatory nature like fiscal federalism.

A trip to memory lane reveals failure of preceding series of revenue commission including that of Philipson Commission 1946, in carrying out an equitable blueprint on how the dividends of the country should go round. In fact, the commission went moribond and out of circulation since 1992 or so, a gross breach of its constitutional obligations to review allocation menu every five years. How pathetic, it echoes into conscience that Nigeria has lived on the statistics issued out some three decades ago. The current distribution configuration has the Federal government munching a lion share 52.68% of the revenue generated, usual beggarly reduced states grapple with 26.72%, while local governments cruise home with 20.72%.
The commission stated that the buck of current review exercise will focus much on the vertical allocation which embraces allocation to the central, state and local governments stripped of any inference in reducing governance cost.

Lest we forget, revenue allocation has been a slippery and perilous endeavour rather than an opportunity to patriotically renegotiate determinants of the nation’s sustainable union. It is one of the toughest assignment that most well received intellectuals shy away from in order to shield hard-earned reputation from viscous attacks. People who have made their marks in the province of macro and micro economics prefer piddling away than been roped in perennial controversies and truckloads of mutual distrust and suspicion that flow afterwards. Those who cared, either frolicked mala fide exhibiting great feat of maladroitness in due performance of the national job. Of most worrisome, is the decisive role population and demographics of states plays in the revenue sharing formula. It must be acknowledged that Nigeria still fall back on past doctored census figures which obviously worked to the disadvantage of a particular section of the country and to the exclusive happiness of others who bask in the feudal illusion of perpetually lording it over the rest indigenous people. Shamefully enough, even the oil region,Niger Delta has faired no better from the meagrely derivative right accorded it. In fact, the home of Nigeria economy mainstay exists in ruination and infrastructural disarray, given continued efforts to wrest from it the little received monthly.

Enugu State too, is not left out in this common disadvantage fringe touring for several decades now. The State earned herself ” Coal City State” during colonial enterprise given the enormity of natural coal strapped underbelly of the State. Aside the large coal deposit, exploitation of crude oil in commercial quantities had been in operation, yet it dwells at receiving end of states pelted with derivative entitlement. Her suffering exclusionary fate and brazen neglect in the schematic of revenue allocation formula smacks of equity bankruptcy.

Surprisedly, the state magically kept afloat governance bills from the monumental internally generated revenue by successive governments, and practically intensified under the present administration of Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, who has put the state once again in the map of comity of states with economic capacity to snap from central apron and yet, lives out routine governance expenditures and or demanding capital projects without going borrowing mindlessly.

Ugwuanyi, a cerebral economist knows the nature of our political turf and how inexpedient it is in consuming the appropriate quarters meant to upend the inequitable distribution formula. Hence, the need to revolutionize state industrial beehives for economic liberation.
Ugwuanyi has relentlessly projected the general welfare of Ndi Enugu national and international since grace shot him into the coveted office. Even as his occupancy lumbers the constitutional end point, Ugwuanyi maintains the battle in frontline for the state admission into her deserved place within the national table of magisterial appropriation of premium benefits.

In his recent courtesy visit at the Government House Enugu, Chris A. Akomas, chairman of Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission was confronted head-on with a disarming request to fastrack requite processes of officially designating Enugu as an oil-bearing state in the country by the ever articulative governor Ugwuanyi informed by the universal principles of equity, justice and fairness.
We hope to seeing the commission doing the needful to assuage building ire of the people who cannot be flayed rightly for making their demands known having starved what is due to them. Our prayers are definitely with the Chairman of the commission as he walk down this frosty part of true federation entrenchment.

Written by

Mrs. Bibian Anekwe

SSA to the Governor of Enugu State on Mobilization and Empowerment

Enugu Di N’akachukwu Movement ( DG)

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