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Akwa Ibom assembly approves Gov. Udom’s N150b loan request

THE Akwa Ibom state, House of Assembly has approved Governor Udom Emmanuel’s request to borrow N150 billion from the money market to fund ongoing projects in the state.

Members of the House of Assembly debated the request letter during yesterday’s plenary.

According to the letter, the state government plans to raise a “financial instrument” worth N150 billion through “promissory note discounting” or “direct credit substitute” to help complete the projects.

In the letter, Gov. Emmanuel explained that the instrument would not require an irrevocable standing payment order or any guarantee, so no monthly deductions from federal allocations to the state would be made.

The discussion was led by House Leader Sir Udo Kierian Akpan, who noted that the governor had stated that he intended to “create” the needed money in the money market rather than take a loan.

He said, “For me, the first thing the Governor has tried to make us know is that the instrument he is going to raise is not a loan. He has what it takes to create the money from the market without involving the assets of the state.

“The second thing is that the instrument does not require deduction of allocations to the state. If the money is not going to be deducted from the federation account, that means we have no issue because what would have been an issue is how we get the money refunded.”

He added, “The governor is a financial expert and a banker, he knows how to create the money from the banks. He knows how they trade, he knows how they get promissory notes, and he knows how they get financial instruments sorted out.

“Having looked at what he wants to do with the money, I believe that it is something that is good for Akwa Ibom people. All we can do is to make sure that the various MDAs are properly oversighted to ensure that projects are completed and on schedule to make sure that Akwa Ibom benefits from the money raised to the state.”

Meanwhile, all of the lawmakers approved the Governor’s request, stating that they were in favor of it because they wanted to be a part of the Akwa Ibom people’s history of good legacy.

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