Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike has blamed the delay in completion of the N120Billion Bonny-Bodo road on failure of the Federal government to pay N60billion counterpart funding for the project.
He asserted that every fund expended so far on the Bonny-Bodo road project had been provided by the NLNG.
Governor Wike stated this at the sendoff ceremony of former NLNG managing director, Tony Attah, which held at the company’s corporate headquarters in Port Harcourt.
The governor, who was accompanied by the Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, maintained that since the N60Billion counterpart fund for the 38 kilometer Bonny-Bodo road will be paid from the federation account, it will be wrong for the federal government to continue to claim glory for the funding of the project with the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG.
“The Bonny-Bodo road is not funded between the Federal Government and NLNG. I don’t agree. With due respect, it is funded between NLNG, all the states of the federation and the Federal Government.”
The Rivers State governor noted that if the federal government was committed to the even development of all parts of the country, it ought to have provided the N60billion counterpart funding for the speedy completion of the Bonny-Bodo road.
“If this country is a country that all of us belong to and all of us mean well for ourselves, that is one project that ought to have been completed by now because of the economic interest that will benefit all of us.”
He eulogized Mr. Attah for the convivial relationship the NLNG under his watch maintained with the government and people of Rivers State.
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The governor said Attah will be remembered for overseeing the commencement and completion of NLNG corporate headquarters building in Port Harcourt and for ensuring that all fabrication works for the company’s $10billion Train 7 were done in Rivers State.
According to him, 7.5 percent Value Added Tax from the NLNG Train 7 project will be used to transform the State.
Based on the convivial relationship Attah nurtured and sustained with the state government, the governor said it is also possible for all those working for the International Oil Companies, IOCs to cultivate better relationship with state governments in the Niger Delta.
The governor remarked that by ensuring the speedy completion of the NLNG headquarters in Port Harcourt, Mr. Attah had proved that the claim of insecurity in the Niger Delta by IOCs is indefensible.
“IOCs will say there is insecurity in Port Harcourt, insecurity in Warri, insecurity in Bayelsa but there is no insecurity in taking the oil and gas.”
The governor declared that posterity will forever be kind to Attah for all his good deeds as the managing director of NLNG.
According to him, any government that is committed to the development of the country must engage technocrats like Mr. Attah.
“NLNG will never forget you (Attah). The Amanyanabo of Bonny will never forget you. Rivers State will not forget you. You have done very well. And I want to tell you by the powers conferred on me in the next award of the state, you are going to get the second highest honour as far as Rivers State is concerned.
“I want to thank you for what you have done for Rivers State. I want to thank you for what you have done for the people of the Niger Delta.”