From Tony John, Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Executive Council has approved a N25 billion loan from Zenith Bank for the funding of the Oyigbo-Afam Road, Chokocho-Igbodo Road, the 10th flyover in Port Harcourt and other projects.
The government said the loan would be repaid within 18 months from the state Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Approval for the loan was given during the Rivers State Executive Council meeting presided over by Governor Nyesom Wike at the Government House, Port Harcourt, Monday.
Briefing reporters on the outcome of the meeting, the Commissioner for Information and Communications, Paulinus Nsirim, explained that the loan would be used to fund people-oriented projects that would further enhance development in all the nooks and crannies of the state.
Nsirim said projects to be funded with the loan included: the Nabo Graham-Douglas Campus of the Nigerian Law School at Rumueme, Port Harcourt, the Chokocho-Igbodo Road in Etche Local Government Area, the Oyigbo-Afam Road in Oyigbo Local Government Area.
Others are the construction of new Magistrate Courts, construction of Judicial Institute for training of judicial officers in the state that would enhance the justice delivery and the Rumuokwurusi-Elimgbu flyover, which would be the 10th flyover that would be constructed by the Governor Wike’s administration.
‘This loan has a repayment period of 18 months, with effect from October, 2021, and to be completed in April, 2023, from the state’s Internally Generated Revenue. The repayment period is N1,547,874,350.66 monthly,’ he said.
The Commissioner for Information and Communications remarked that all the wide range of the projects were people-oriented and they are intended to further enhance development in all the nooks and crannies of the state.
He reaffirmed that the Wike administration avowed commitment to ensure that all projects that are initiated by the government are completed before the end of the tenure.
Nsirim further maintained that the Wike administration would not abandon any project it initiated.
In the same vein, the Commissioner for Works, Elloka Tasie-Amadi, said the N25 billion loan was deemed necessary because all the projects it would be used to fund are time bound.
‘The loan was deemed necessary because if you consider all the projects intended to be funded by this loan, for instance, the Oyigbo-Afam Road or the 27 kilometre Chokocho-Igbodo Road, these projects have construction time, which means that it is very important that we commence the projects immediately and take advantage of the coming dry season as well,’ he said.
‘We also have considered the inflationary trend in the country and found out that we don’t know what the prices of these projects will become if we take much longer to activate them. So, these considerations have made the Rivers State Government to take this loan from Zenith Bank to fund all these projects.’
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