By Anayo Okoli
Umuahia – GOVERNOR Theodore Orji of Abia state said that the state still has a debt profile of $29 million, which he said is affecting the speed of development in the state. The debt, he said was making it difficult to live up to expectation ofÂ the people.
Governor Orji, who spoke at a meeting with members of the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) in Umuahia said that it would be unfair for people to compare the level of development in the South -South states or Lagos with that in Abia state, because according to him, debt deductions are still being made at source from Abia stateâ€™sÂ federal allocation every month.
â€œIf I get half of what they get, you will all see wonders. When I hearÂ people say that I eat money, I ask where is the money when workers are being owed backlog of salaries? For instance, we received N2 billion last month. We spent N1.4 billion on workersâ€™ salaries. How much developments can the remaining N600 million do?
â€œThey gave me the sum of N205 million as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) for last month, the amount of money that canâ€™t even asphalt 12 kilometer road. Yet people expect me to do magic. Unfortunately, people donâ€™t pay tax hereâ€, Orji lamented.
However, Orji said that his administration had concluded arrangements to offset the backlog of salaries owed to local government workers, teachers, councilors and contractors in the state.