by crossriverwatch admin
Apparently articulating its agenda ahead of the forthcoming National Conference, Cross River State Government has urged its delegates to the conference to consciously advance positions that would be in the best interest of the state.
Making the charge while addressing citizens of the state who included national and state legislators, members of the state executive council, elder statesmen, politician stake holders and youth groups at the Government Lodge, Calabar today, Governor Liyel Imoke, highlighted the agenda of the state to include compensation for the loss of the Bakassi Peninsula and the right to control its solid mineral resources.
Also to be canvassed by the yet to be nominated state’s delegates to the conference, according to Governor Imoke are control of National Parks, Inland Waterways, as well as what constitutes the definition of federal roads in the state.
While insisting on the need for a true Fiscal Federalism, Governor Imoke said the concept should be seen beyond mere control of resources to enabling states collect and remit revenues from solid minerals.
On Federal Government collecting revenue from waterways through the department of Inland Waterways in states, Imoke wondered why it should be so instead of the states collecting revenue generated from water transportation.
Others are community policing in states to fight crimes but should not be involved in federal election processes, hence they are on the Exclusive List.
The Governor similarly frowned on subsidy which is currently the basis for revenue sharing formula rather than on consumption.
Imoke said the state strongly supports the conference because “as a people, we have a lot of challenges that have to be addressed and discussing it will be useful to the nation, despite objections from certain quarters.”
According to him, “Though some people may say previous dialogues did not bring anything, this conference will create an opportunity to bring a lot of things to the table as well as address weaknesses. We need to articulate on issues that will build the nation rather than separate us as a people.”
On strong representation to the conference, Imoke added: “It is good for us to have representations that will understand the thrust of the conference right from the very first day as well as to understand the position of South-South and Southern Nigeria.
“We need a strong voice to represent the people, not one that will not be seen or vocal, to participate in discussions that are not only specific to Cross River State but national enough, not on sentiments but capacity, because it is a meeting of the minds that will come out with a resolution.”
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