Presidency debunks claims of reintroducing on-shore off-shore dichotomy

Timothy Choji, Abuja

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The Presidency says there are no plans to re-introduce the abolished on-shore-off-shore dichotomy in the allocation of resources to States of the federation.

Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly matters, Ita Enang made this known to State House Correspondents while addressing them on the matter.

He said: “Attention is drawn to the campaign against Mr. President, the APC as a party and the Committee on proposal for re-structuring of Nigeria report led by Governor El-Rufai alleging that the said Report is introducing on-shore-off-shore dichotomy intended to deprive the littoral states of Akwa lbom, Bayelsa, Rivers, Delta, Lagos among others of the derivation content of Revenue allocation. And more, by Akwa Ibom State alleging that a greater part of her revenue is from off-shore oil. As preliminary I want to state aforehand that neither President Muhammed Buhari, the APC as a Ruling party nor the Report on re-structuring has reintroduced covertly or overtly or in any manner whatsoever the abrogated on-shore-off-shore dichotomy and that the statutory allocation to Akwa Ibom and other littoral States will not decrease. I speak and say again that the intendment of the Report is to allow the states control resources and devolve more powers to the states, and consequently increase allocation to the states, of which Akwa Ibom is among.”

The Presidential Adviser said contrary to insinuations, the APC committee on true federalism recommended an upward review of the revenue formula and more control of resources allocated to the states by the states themselves.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the Report on pages 18, 19 & 21, Volume 1 of Report of the APC Committee on True Federalism, Recommends as follows: –

To the unity of the country and ensure that states are more financially empowered to deliver services to their residents, as well as ensure no one feels disadvantaged, the committee recommends that the federal government should expeditiously review derivation to reflect areas of consensus which are adoption of “state resources and pay FG”, upward review of the current formula in favour of states and adoption of similar derivation formula in favour of solid minerals and power generation. The committee in response to popular opinion recommends an upward review of the current derivation formula and adoption of the said formula in favour of solid minerals and hydro power. This recommendation will entail the amendment of section of Constitution 

“Based on the response received and other findings, the Committee recommends an upward review of the current revenue sharing formula in favour the states and taking cognizance of the proposed control of resources by the states and the devolution of powers from the Federal Government to the states. The apprehension of the contenders is that the Recommendation says that the oil, gas, and other minerals devolved to the state and that off-shore belongs to the Federal Government,” he said.

Mr Enang posited that at no point has the committee on true federalism recommended for the dichotomy to be re-introduced or enforced, “and the Federal Government is not doing so at this moment. May this be enough to allay the fears of the agitated or lay to rest the issues raised by false alarmists.”

Nnenna.O