By Egufe Yafugborhi – Port Harcourt
Rivers State Government has slashed its 2020 budget size by nearly half, 48% from N530,813,357,619.00 Billion to 300,370,071,183.00 Billion.
The state has also announced a free bus service for commuters in Port Harcourt and environs from Monday, June 1, 2020, through the coronavirus pandemic just as the dead can now be buried under the pandemic based on imposed conditions.
These decisions were announced following Wednesday State Executive Council Meeting, presided over by Governor Nyesom Wike at the Government House, Port Harcourt.
Isaac Kamalu, Commissioner for Finance and Supervisory Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning who announced the budget slash said approval was also given for review of 2020 Medium Term Expenditure Framework, accommodating downsizing of the budget, considering of all necessary parameters geared towards purposeful service and effective leadership delivery.
Commissioner for Transport, Sunny Ejekwu said the Free Bus Scheme with a fleet of 28 Luxury Buses to convey commuters in Obio/Akpor, Port Harcourt, Eleme and Oyigbo Local Government Areas was done to ameliorate sufferings being faced by the Rivers populace
Ejekwu said the wearing of facemasks was compulsory for any commuter desirous enjoying the free buses.
Commissioner for Information and Communications, Paulinus Nsirim, then announced the setting up of an Executive Committee to outline conditions to enable bereaved families to bury loved ones under Covid-19.
The Committee, headed by Secretary to the State Government, Tammy Danagogo, has Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zaccheus Adangor, Commissioner for Special Duties, Thomas Bariere, Commissioner for Youths, Prince Ohia and Special Adviser to the Governor on Special Projects, Dax Kelly as members.