The Chairman of Odukpani Local Government Council, Hon. Mrs. Justina Edem, has listed renovation of exco council and offices, as well as the renovation of the legislative chamber as part of the projects initiated with the thirty million naira take-off fund released to the various LGAs by the Executive Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency Ben Ayade.
She made this remark Monday 17th May 2021, while fielding questions in her Odukpani office, from the No Sidon Look media Team, led by the Director General, Mr. Portrait Peterson.
Listing her achievements so far, Hon. Justina asserted, “we have been able to renovate the political block, and the legislative chamber. We have also renovated the staff canteen, at the request of the Chairman of the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE).”
Mrs. Edem also added that she was able to give scholarship to students, even though the number of beneficiaries and the name of the school(s) were not provided.
Asked about other sources of internally generated revenue aside state and federal allocation, she responded thus; “we don’t have any other source of IGR. Since His Excellency the Executive Governor Ben Ayade has ordered that low-income earners and small business owners should be exempted from paying tax, we don’t tax our market men and women.”
However, she revealed that the council intends to renovate the council hall which can then serve as a source of IGR, when hired for occasions.
The Honorable Chairman likewise added that as part of her achievements, she has been “able to lure in the Ekondo Microfinance Bank and situated health posts for immediate medical intervention across various communities.”
She further appreciated Governor Ayade for availing her the “free hands to operate,” while promising that before the expiration of her tenure she would have executed visibly tangible projects, that would meet the needs of the Odukpani people.
However, this reporter, worried about the slow pace of development within the LGA, heard the Chairman fingering the leader of the council, Hon. Godswill Iya as one of the looters who carted away zincs meant for the roofing of the council hall, hence the halt in the ongoing renovations.
Seeking and asking the Chairperson clarification on this grievous allegation, Hon. Edem sarcastically restated, “some persons came and carted away zincs from the legislative chamber, when I asked the councillors, they told me that it is only the leader who has key to that room. So if you were the one, who would you have suspected?”
Meanwhile, all efforts to get the leader to respond to this allegation proved abortive, as plenary session was ongoing as at the time of filing this report. But, a follow-up story would be published in subsequent publication.
Objectively, this reporter can categorically report that Odukpani LG Council like others, has received a thirty million naira take-off fund, and has also recently been credited a whopping sum of one hundred million naira for developmental projects.
© Efa Sunday