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Lawmaker kicks against Amaechi’s N50bn loan

THE leader of the six anti-Rotimi Amaechi lawmakers, Mr. Evans Bipi, has decried the rate at which some members of the State House of Assembly have been granting approval to the request for loan by the state governor.
Bipi, who represents Ogu/Bolo State Constituency, described the action of members of the House as illegal.
He was reacting to the Assembly’s approval of Amaechi’s request for a N50bn bond.
The Rivers State House of Assembly had on Monday approved a N50bn bond requested by the State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi.
But Bipi described the approval as unfortunate and disturbing, alleging that the pro-Amaechi members of the House and the governor were moving towards mortgaging the future of the state on debts running into hundreds of billions of naira.
The lawmaker, who is addressed as a factional speaker in some quarters, alleged in a statement he personally signed on Tuesday that the N50bn loan was for the funding of activities of the All Progressives Congress in the state.
In the statement in Port Harcourt on Tuesday, Bipi dismissed claims by the pro-Amaechi lawmakers and the governor that the loan was to be used to complete ongoing projects in the state.
Bipi said, “It is unfortunate and disturbing that governor Amaechi and his friends who are incidentally lawmakers of the Rivers State House of Assembly are gradually succeeding in their bid to mortgage the future of Rivers State on huge debts running into hundreds of billions of naira.
“We strongly believe that the recent purported approval of N50 billion loan for the governor was to fund the activities of the All Progressive Congress in Rivers State and not to complete ongoing projects in the state as claimed by Amaechi and his friends.
“Rivers people have almost lost count of the various loans the Amaechi administration has obtained since inception. It is pertinent to note that the Amaechi administration has borrowed more money than previous administrations put together.”
He, however, called on commercial banks, particularly Zenith Bank, Access Bank and Guarantee Trust Bank not to yield to the governor’s request for the N50bn loan.
He said, “Any bank that grants such request stands the risk of losing its money because the budget is not recognised by law.
“We also call on the Central Bank of Nigeria not to honour request from any commercial bank regarding the issuance of N50bn loan to the Rivers State Government.”
The Senior Special Assistant, Media to the Interim State Chairman of the APC, Chief Chukwuemeka Eze, disagreed with Bipi, adding that no House of Assembly would approve money for a governor to fund a political party.
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