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Niger State Government has asked the federal government to consider landmass in the revenue sharing formula for the country.
The State Commissioner for Finance, Zakari Abubakar, disclosed this in an interview shortly after the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) led by its Federal Commissioner, Barrister Patrick Mgbebu Nworu, met with Governor Abubakar Sani Bello in a closed door meeting at the Government House, Minna.
Abubakar noted that the landmass of the state is the largest in the country with its topography having environmental challenges such as annual flooding, noted that the ecological fund for the State was not sufficient.
The Commissioner appealed that a certain percentage should be added to states that are challenged by environmental hazards.
He said the state is challenged by its size as opposed to the revenue that accrued to it, added that if the landmass is considered, it will assist the state government to access and tackle the environmental challenges.
“In the consideration of the indices of revenue, the issue of landmass should be given a lot of weight”, he said.
The Commissioner also pointed out that the number of Federal Roads criss-crossing the state was another issue that should be factored in the revenue sharing formula by the Federal Government.
The RMAFC Federal Commissioner, Barrister Nworu, said the commission members were in the state for advocacy and sensitization on revenue data and its management.
He said their mission in the state was also to get the stakeholders to know the value and the need to submit transparent as well as verifiable revenue data.
According to him, it is the commission’s mandate to formulate ways to allocate revenue from the federation account to the states and local governments.