By Festus Ahon
ASABA—Delta State House of Assembly has approved a short term loan facility of N7.9 billion for Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to finance priority road projects in the state and purchase buses for Delta Line Transport Service Limited.
Governor Okowa, in a letter read by the Speaker, Mr. Sheriff Oborevwori, at the resumption of plenary after a break occasioned by the elections, said there was urgent need for the state government to support some of its roads contractors in accessing financing to accelerate the execution of critical projects before the onset of the rainy season.
He said the request had become expedient considering the almost N3 billion drop in Federation Accounts receipt in January, compared to December 2018 which had hindered planned disbursement to the contractors.
The governor noted that most of the contractors were already on site and have generated payment certificates for works already executed, which were yet to be defrayed.
Majority Leader, Tim Owhefere, in separate motions moved for the House to receive the request for further consideration and approval.
The motion was adopted through a voice vote after it was seconded by Emeka Nwaobi and Johnson Erijo.
Also at plenary, the House approved the request of the governor to guarantee credit facility to be obtained by Delta Line Transport Service Limited.
According to the letter read by the Speaker, Oborevwori, the governor said the development was in a bid to revamp the ailing Delta Transport Service Limited.
He stated that the company had over the years relied on continuous assistance from the state government to pay salaries and other recurrent obligations as well as capital expenditure despite being a business that should generate revenue.
Okowa said the state government sold 60 percent equity of Delta Line to God is Good Motors Transport Development Company by way of a public private partnership arrangement with the state government retaining 40 percent equity in the company.
Earlier, the Speaker welcomed members back to plenary after the general elections break and commended Deltans for the re-electing of Governor Okowa for a second term and all People Democratic Party, PDP, candidates.