Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has disclosed that he would approach the State House of Assembly for approval to borrow N5 billion for the payment of counterpart funding of joint projects with development partners. He made the disclosure at the Banquet Hall of the Benue Peoples House Makurdi during a courtesy call on him by the partners. Governor Ortom said in spite of the economic downturn he had just approved the release of N20 million to UNICEF as counterpart fund to enable it carry out its projects across the state.
He explained that having realised the importance of development partners in complementing government efforts towards enhancing service delivery in different sectors of the state he was determined to meet the obligations of the state government.
Governor Ortom disclosed that as a practical demonstration of his commitment towards partnership he had compiled all counterpart commitments across the board and would approach the State Assembly to approve a N5 billion loan to procure and pay.
He expressed optimism that with the payment he was sure that the partners would commit much more while assuring that whatever funds meant for development of the state would be judiciously applied. Governor Ortom restated the commitment of his government to fight corruption and ensure compliance with due process and the rule of law adding that his insistence on doing the needful was predicated on his covenant with God and the people.
In a remark, the Director General of the State Planning Commission, Mrs. Dorcas Ukpe stated that the partners had assisted the state government to improve on service delivery in various sectors including agriculture, health, education, security as well as human and material development. Earlier, head of delegation from UNICEF zonal office Enugu, Mr. Charles Nzuki, expressed hope that with the commitment shown by the administration, donor agencies would be encouraged to put in their best.