The proposed Northeast Development Commission (NDC) that is currently being legislated by the Nigerian
Senate, if passed into law, will get
its funding from 15 per cent deductions from the monthly allocations of
the six states in the region.
The six non-oil producing states,
which are rated amongst the poorest in Nigeria, will have to part with
15 per cent of their income from the Federation Account to enable the
new commission help them fix their states which had been destroyed by
This is coming exactly two months after Vice President
Yemi Osinbanjo disclosed in Maiduguri, Borno State, during a
multi-sectoral stakeholders’ roundtable on North East that the
Presidential Initiative for Northeast-Nigeria (PINE) will be spending
the sums of N97 billion and N116 billion on the short term and long term
basis respectively in the rebuilding and development of the Boko
Haram-ravaged region within five years’ time frame.
Senate said it was determined to help in the rehabilitation and
reconstruction of the North East region after years of devastation by
the Boko Haram insurgency.
It hopes that if the bill seeking the
establishment of the NDC fully comes on board anytime in 2016, the
commission would have to rely on the 15 per cent per cent of the six
states’ grants as well as three per cent of the total annual budget of
any solid minerals extraction mining company operating in the troubled
North East states, including agricultural processing companies, as a
source of the commission’ funding.
The bill also wants a chunk of
the 50 per cent of the funds due to member states of the commission from
the Ecological Fund to be channelled into the coffers of the new
The 18 senators from the six North East states
sponsored the bill as representatives of theirs states: Adamawa, Bauchi,
Borno, Gombe Taraba and Yobe.
We learnt the Bill has gone
through second reading and is awaiting a public hearing before the
final clause-by-clause consideration and eventual passage into law.
senators said the new proposed law is expected to give the people of
the zone a sense of belonging through deliberate legal efforts to
rebuild the region.
The bill says the commission, if established,
will have such monies granted or lent to, or deposited with the
commission by the federal government or a state government, any other
body or institution whether local or foreign.
The bill also
provides that the commission, when established, “shall in every year
submit to the National Assembly, through the president of the country,
an estimate of the expenditure and income of the commission during the
next succeeding year for approval not later than September 30.”
fully activated, the commission will be charged with the
responsibilities “to receive and manage fund from allocation of the
Federation Account and international donors for the settlement,
rehabilitation and reconstruction of roads, houses and business premises
of victims of insurgency as well as tackling the menace of poverty,
literacy level, ecological problems and any other related environmental
or developmental challenges in the region.”
One of the co-sponsors
of the Bill, Senator Danjumma Goje, told LEADERSHIP in an interview
that the Bill was inspired by their collective concern about the
development of their region.
“Like I said earlier, we need to
rebuild that part of the country and give the people a true sense of
belonging. It is not a fault of theirs that the activities of insurgents
have destroyed their sources of livelihood, crippled the economy, lives
lost, properties destroyed,” said Goje.