Daniels Igoni, Yenagoa
Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State declared on Wednesday that the categorisation of the state as insolvent also suggest that the Federal Government was bankrupt.
Diri spoke when he hosted a delegation from the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission at the Government House, Yenagoa.
Last week, the chairman of RMAFC, Mr Elias Mbam, had grouped Bayelsa with the four states of Borno, Kebbi, Katsina and Taraba as states that had become insolvent.
But Diri contended that Bayelsa, as an oil and gas-producing state, could not be declared insolvent in isolation of Nigeria which had also been rendered bankrupt by the existing abnormalities in the country.
According to him, the time had come to change the revenue formula to reflect the principles of “true federalism which promotes equity and justice.”
The governor, who renewed his call on multinationals to relocate their headquarters to Bayelsa, said, “We cannot be doing things the same way and expect a different result. A state where a good percentage of the revenue that Nigeria shares (is generated), is said to be bankrupt. How does that happen in any normal society? It tells us that there is an abnormality in this country. Should Bayelsa be bankrupt, then Nigeria should also be declared bankrupt.”
He charged the RMAFC to be agents of change to ensure that the current abnormalities in Nigeria’s federal structure were corrected.