Erosion: Rep wants separate Ecological Fund Account for states


Rep. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, the Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Representatives, has called for the creation of an Ecological Fund Account for the states distinct from the Federation Account.
Onyejeocha, representing Isuikwuato/Umunneochi Federal Constituency of Abia, made the call on Sunday, while speaking on the huge ecological disaster ravaging the area.
She expressed concern that some governors often claimed that they were not receiving ecological fund from the Federal Government to tackle ecological challenges in their states.
She described the claim as deceptive, saying that ecological funds to states were usually built into monthly federal allocation to states.
“Ecological fund usually comes with the monthly federal allocation to states. The fund is part of the items on Federation Accounts Allocation Committee.
“But we should bring to the consciousness of the Federal Government the fact that Ecological Fund should have a separate account.
“This is the only way the money and releases could be tracked by the legislature and the people to ensure that it was deployed appropriately in tackling ecological challenges,” the lawmaker said.
She said that records of such funds were stored in the Ecological Office database, adding, “This is a call on the governors to know that there is a record for every fund they collected.”
Onyejeocha therefore appealed to the governors to be sensitive to the plight of the erosion-ravaged communities in their respective states by doing the needful.
She said that the Ecological Office had visited all the erosion sites in Abia and said that intervention by the federal government was imminent.
She also spoke of the efforts she had made toward the realisation of the federal government’s rural electrification project in her constituency.
She however expressed worry over the activities of vandals, who she accused of regularly vandalising electricity installations in the area.
Onyejeocha commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his proven commitment to tackle the infrastructure deficit in the country, especially the South-East zone.
She said that the president had proved that he meant well for Nigeria given his rare policy of working to complete projects he inherited from past administrations.
He therefore appealed to Nigerians to be patient with the president and continue to support his administration.
Onyejeocha admitted that Abia was privileged to have two principal officers in the National Assembly and promised that it would facilitate rapid development in the state.
She promised to join hands with Sen. Orji Kalu, the Senate Chief Whip, to attract more federal projects to the state.
Meanwhile, the lawmaker said that no fewer that 60 patients had so far undergone surgeries for different ailments, including eye and hernia, under her annual free medical outreach for her constituents.
Onyejeocha, who conducted newsmen round the health centre, venue of the surgery, described the programme as part of her initiatives to touch lives, aside from youth empowerment and job placement for the people of her constituency.
She further spoke on power sharing in Abia, saying that it should be the turn of the people of Isuikwuato in Abia north to produce the next governor in 2023.
She contended that other components of the state from where the acronym – ABIA – was coined had taken their turn to produce governors, except Isuikwuato, represented by the ‘I’