PDP states brainstorm in Abuja on revenue drive

States governed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Wednesday, kicked off a two-day brainstorming session on ways to increase revenue drive and cut wastes.

Organized under the auspices of the  PDP Governors Forum in Abuja, the 2019 Internally-Generated Revenue Summit has the theme: “The Imperatives of Developing Internally Generated Revenue Options for State Governments in a Recessed Economy.”

Speaking at the opening ceremony, the National Chairman of the party, Prince Uche Secondus, pointed out that beyond the issue of enhancing internally-generated revenue, the PDP states must cut down on wastage to be able to prepare for the future.

Represented by the party’s National Financial Secretary, Abdulahi Maibasira, Secondus observed that the myriads of problems facing the country necessitated the move away from the reliance federal allocation to a robust internally-generated revenue.

ALSO READ: PDP’s Bayelsa, Kogi loss: The limit of protests

However, he warned that improved revenue by itself was not enough as the state government must demonstrate prudence in the management of resources to meet the needs of the people.

The party boss said: “The myriad of problems facing the country, like poor infrastructure, poverty and the likes, necessitate the need for more sources of fund. But increased IGR may not solve the problem. The best way to do this is to be prudent in the management of resources. There must be a cut down in waste to be able to prepare for tomorrow.”

Secondus blasted the All Progressive Congress (APC) federal government for leading Nigeria to the unenviable position of the poverty capital of the world.

He expressed the hope that the summit would find solutions to the revenue issues hindering the performances of government, advising that it should examine the issue of taxation, double taxation, secret tax codes, the ease of doing business, and the structure of government.

”We need to make revenue base count and make the country work.

ALSO READ: Gov Masari presents N249.5 bn budget for 2020

We can’t get the country working unless we do the needful,” Secondus stated.

On the recent Kogi and Bayelsa gubernatorial election, the PDP boss said the party was saddened by the use of violence, which he said, led to the loss of lives.

He regretted that despite the fact that the Kogi exercise was adjudged to have fallen below the acceptable standards, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) still allowed the result to stand, saying that it showed the incompetence of the electoral body.

While noting that the PDP was founded on peace, hence its states were able to improve on their internally-generated revenue, he urged the governors to remain united to be able to meet the aspirations of the people.

Speaking earlier, the Director-General of the PDP Governors Forum, Osaro Onaiwu, observed that given the vagaries of the crude market, the states could not continue to rely on federal allocation.

He said while not calling for increased taxes, it was necessary for the PDP states to find ways to generate more revenue.

He admonished that the state governments must continue to prioritize peace as there could not be increased revenue in an atmosphere of violence.

Onaiwu advised that whatever revenue was generated must be used to create wealth in the states.