By Austin Ogwuda
Asaba— Delta State Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, Mr. Newworld Safugha, has denied allegations of discrimination in the disbursement of the N500 million flood disaster fund granted the state by the Federal Government for last year’s flooding victims in the state. He said that the 25 local government areas under his supervision were collaborating effectively with the committee charged with the management of the fund.
Some communities in Ndokwa had criticised the way the fund was being managed, saying that they had not been visited to assess the damage done by the flood to their communities, let alone benefited from the N500 million largesse.
Safugha in Asaba, when he took his turn to address newsmen on the ongoing Mid-term report of the ministries in the state, clarified that funds due to the local government areas were not tampered with as was the case in some states. He said: “Here in Delta, the governor is even spending over half a billion naira every month in bailing out the councils in the payment of teachers’ salaries.
“In answer to your question on the N500 million fund, I know that the Committee on Flood and the councils are not relating but if there are issues, my attention has not been drawn to them. Once my attention is formally drawn to them, I will handle it.”
On the Igbodo crisis resulting from the refusal of the Obi of the community to marry an indigene, the Commissioner said “the deputy governor, Professor Amos Utuama, SAN, set up a committee which I am a member. The committee, headed by him held several meetings including with the Igbodo community, the stakeholders, the traditional ruler and even the council that is Ika North East Local Government Area and representatives of the Commissioner of Police and Director of Department of State Security, DSS.
“As soon as the committee completes its assignment, the deputy governor will direct that for the outcome be made public and I can assure that the crisis is almost resolved.”