The Cross River State Government has declared as false, the claim made by the Chairman of the Revenue Allocation Mobilization and Fiscal Commission, Mr. A.M. Shehu, that the Federal Government pays a monthly stabilization fund of $500 million to the state for the loss of Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon.
The Nation reported that the state government, in a press statement signed by the Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to the State Governor, Mr. Christian Ita, maintained that it was not aware of such funds as compensation for the loss of some oil wells by the state when the Peninsula was ceded to Cameroon.
The statement added that the RAMFAC chairman could have misrepresented the N500 million monthly stabilization fund, saying that even at that, the revenue allocation boss ought to have remembered that the Federal Government deducts “between 1.6 to 2 billion Naira from Cross River State monthly allocations”.
The Cross River State Government said that with the monthly deduction of close to N2 billion from its monthly allocations by the Federal Government, the monthly stabilization fund of N500 million had paled into insignificance.
The statement read: “The attention of the Cross River State Government has been drawn to a video of the appearance of the Chairman of the Revenue Allocation Mobilization and Fiscal Commission (RAMFAC), Mr. A.M. Shehu, on Channels Television’s Sunrise Program wherein he claimed the Federal Government pays $500 million monthly as stabilization fund to the state for the ceding of Bakassi Peninsula and the attendant loss of oil wells
“We strongly believe the Commission’s chairman misspoke because as a state we are not aware of, and have never received $500 million as a stabilization fund from the Federal Government.
“We are, therefore, calling on the RAMFAC Chairman to correct this faux pas, which has caused the state government considerable embarrassment.
“However, if Mr Shehu was referring to N5OO million as against the $500 million which he claimed, then there is nothing new about it.
‘The said fund has been in existence since 2008, long before the coming to office of Governor Ben Ayade-led administration.
“Meanwhile, is it not ridiculous that while the RAMFAC Chairman was gleefully mentioning $500 million as a monthly stabilization fund to the state, which is not true,
“he failed to mention that the same Federal Government deducts between 1.6 to 2 billion Naira from Cross River State monthly allocations, thus making nonsense of the said N500 million monthly stabilization fund?”