From TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
The Chief of Staff, Government House, Port Harcourt, Emeka Woke, has said Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, does not tamper with Local Government funds.
Woke said that since the inception of Governor Wike ‘s administration in 2015, Local Government chairmen in the State have enjoyed the liberty to utilise their funds for the development of their people.
The Chief of Staff made the assertion shortly after commissioning the Staff Canteen constructed in Emohua secretariat
by the Emohua council chairman, Chidi Lloyd.
Woke declared that Governor Wike has continued to consciously deepen democratic governance in Rivers State, through his non-interference with council funds.
“He has shown leadership. The governor is not a governor that is interested in the allocation or the money that is accruing to Local Government councils. I’m speaking here and I want to be challenged. Let one council chairman out of 23 say we went to JAAC (Joint Account Allocation Committee) and at the end of JAAC meeting, we were asked for money.”
He further added, “for the past seven years, we have not asked council chairmen to contribute for anything. And so, they have the liberty to use their funds, take the initiative with our guidance. Of course, we have the Ministry of Local Government that directs and guides them and that is why we are celebrating democracy today.”
The Chief of Staff said he was elated by the developmental strides of Lloyd since he was elected as the chairman of Emohua council barely a year ago.
According to him, the reason the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) leadership in Emohua endorsed Lloyd to contest for the office of the chairman of the council, was because they believed he could made a difference.
“What we are seeing today is an eloquent testimony of a right choice, a good decision and then leadership.”
Woke urged the people of Emohua council to continue to support Governor Wike and the PDP.
He maintained that no administration since the creation of Rivers State in 1967 could boast of more project execution in Emohua council than Governor Wike’s government.
“There has been government in this State since 1967, I stand to be challenged, mention one administration that has favoured Emohua council than the administration of Nyesom Ezenwo Wike in terms of empowerment, appointment and project execution.”
The Emohua council chairman, Lloyd, explained that the inception of his administration was turbulent because he had to grapple with issues of documentation and staff welfare.
He attributed his modest achievements in the past one year to prudent and judicious utilisation of resources which hitherto went into private pockets.
“In Emohua we do not share money . What we do here is use money for the good of majority of people of this Local Government. Gone are those days when it was said that there is no money in council.
” Chief of Staff, there has been different kind of stories on whether the governor gives me money privately to do these projects that we are doing here, or whether I borrowed money from banks . I want to place of record that this Local Government is not indebted to any financial institution.”