Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has again requested the Delta State House of Assembly to approve yet another humongous loan, this time coming up to the unbelievable sum of 150 billion Naira, a facility to be managed by the Jim Ovia controlled Zenith Bank as Lead Arranger!
Governor Okowa aims to secure this completely irregular loan against, according to him, “expected inflow from the Federation Account from petroleum subsidy payments made without recourse to the 13 % derivation due to oil producing states from January 1999 to 30th November, 2021”.
The Governor went further to present what is a most unlawful excuse for obtaining this insane amount to his rubber stamp legislature, claiming that the state’s ability to deliver the phantom legacy projects of his shameful administration is, according to him “limited by the fact that the expected total refund will not be received into the state’s account in one lump sum” but “will be refunded over a period of five years on a quarterly basis with effect from April, 2022 to January, 2027”.
Upon this astonishingly unconstitutional grounds, Okowa then claims that “the implication of this is that the State will need to secure a bridging facility in order to achieve the objectives and the facility shall be secured with the quarterly expected inflows”.
Okowa therefore wants to spend what will accrue to Delta over the next five years within the last one year of his terrible mistake of a ‘one chance’ administration!
Within the last few months, this fellow has gotten approval, from the rubber-stamp legislature of Delta State, for loans amounting in excess of 250 billion naira and we are all sitting quietly in this state watching this pathetic excuse for an administration mortgaging our children’s children way into the future, while all the resources of our state keep steadily disappearing into private pockets!
This 150 billion naira loan is a fraud from the pit of hell and it is absolutely shocking that a financial institution of the supposed pedigree of Zenith Bank PLC would lend itself to such a selfevidently unconstitutional transaction.
Unlike what Okowa told his wilfully servile legislators, the only lawful and legitimate implication of future revenue is that it can only be allocated in the future for expenditure by the government that happens to be in power at such time in the future at which such revenue materializes.
Indeed, going by Okowa’s twisted logic, it means that if we can just get some crooked bankers to simply project that 20 years from now, Delta State will earn a windfall of 1 trillion naira, the government in power today can just go ahead and borrow 1 trillion and spend it right now, having secured the repayment of the loan against the projected 1 trillion, which, if it ever materializes, is deemed in law as revenue meant for expenditure by a future administration that would be in power 20 years from now!
The income ordinarily accruing to our state every month can adequately settle pensions and ensure the completion of all projects as long as it does not keep disappearing into private pockets in and around Government House, Asaba.
Let no one be fooled: Delta State is, per capita, by far the richest state in Nigeria, today.
Our one and only problem is to have found ourselves in a true horror of a situation wherein we are stuck with a complete mistake of a Governor who insists on leaving office as the richest Governor in the entire history of Nigeria!
At the rate at which Okowa and co are burying this state under mountains upon mountains of debts, we will have no state left to call our own when his horrific tenure expires next year.
This 150 billion is a challenge to the entirety of all Deltans to close ranks right now and claim back this state from a Governor that has clearly lost it.
We can assure the Delta State House of Assembly that it will be hearing from the courts and the anti-graft agencies soonest and each and every one of its 29 members with a hand in these series of diabolical borrowings will be made to pay dearly for all their excesses, thus far.
Zenith Bank PLC is hereby placed on notice that it will only be aiding and abetting economic and financial crimes against the good people of Delta State in its role as Lead Arranger of this clearly illegal loan.
All other participating financial institutions are similarly enjoined to steer clear.
The constitution does not provide for one administration to expend revenue that is yet to materialize and could only be lawfully due to a another administration five years into the future.
This 150 billion has nothing to do with any authentic legacy projects and is actually solely intended for Arthur, Edith and Marilyn.
It is quite unfortunate, but our Governor has simply lost it and we are no longer having any of these exceedingly costly shenanigans he and his hideous goons keep coming up with.
Delta State is not collecting this insane loan and, on behalf of the good people of this once lovely state, we are going to make sure it does not happen.
It is time to resist this madness.
E. V. Onojeghuo, Esq.,
State Publicity Secretary.
April 27, 2022