Leadership (Abuja)

11 December 2012

Nigeria: NGF Will Meet With National Assembly Over 2012 to 2014 Medium Term External Borrowing Plan

The Nigeria Governors' Forum (NGF) will meet with Finance Ministry and National Assembly over the revised proposed pipeline projects under the Medium Term External Borrowing Plan of 2012 to 2014.

This is contained in a communiqué issued at the end of the forum's meeting in Abuja on Tuesday.

The communiqué, read by Gov. Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers, the forum's Chairman, said the decision was to enable the forum deliberate further with the ministry and the legislature.

The forum, which comprised the 36 elected governors, also carried out an end of year review of its polio eradication initiative across the states of the federation.

It noted changes in the demography of incidences and resolved that states should put necessary incentives to motivate vaccinators for better performance and better information sharing mechanism of good practices across states.

The forum also emphasised the centrality of routine immunisation as a sustainable means of eradicating polio in the country.

It also stressed the need to engage stakeholders from local communities in the campaign against the dreaded virus.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Minister of State for Finance, Dr Yerima Ngama, and some state Commissioners for Finance had defended their request for external loan of 7.9 billion dollars before the senate.

The loan, named Medium-Term External Borrowing Plan (Revised), which spans from 2012 to 2014, is expected to be used for the execution of specific development projects.

President Goodluck Jonathan had recently sent a letter to the senate, seeking its approval to borrow 7.9 billion dollars for the 2012-2014 pipeline projects.

Most of the governors, who attended Tuesday's meeting, described it as 'fruitful' and a way to clear some issues associated with the Medium-Term External Borrowing Plan.

Gov. Peter Obi of Anambra, who spoke with newsmen at the end of the meeting, said that borrowing for development purposes was right.

Obi added that it is wrong when borrowing was undertaken for consumption.

Gov. Kayode Fayemi of the Ekiti said that the Medium-Term External Borrowing Plan was in stages, adding that the Ministry of Finance and other relevant bodies had cleared some issues relating to it.

" The National Assembly had been seating on this and some issues had come up and that is what we are trying to clear," he said.

Governors of Abia, Ebonyi, Anambra, Enugu, Imo, Borno, Taraba, Bauchi, Gombe, Akwa Ibom, Kaduna, Jigawa, Kano, Kebbi, Zamfara, Kogi, Niger, Ondo, Adamawa, Kwara, Lagos, Ogun, Ekiti and Yobe attended the meeting.

The NGF is an umbrella association of the 36 elected governors of the federation irrespective of party affiliation

NAN

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