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Abia Secures $125m Loan To Implement 2024 Budget



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Abia State Governor, Alex Otti, says the state government plans to secure loans to implement the 2024 Budget, adding that already, the Islamic Development Bank has approved $125 million for the state.

Otti disclosed this Monday during a chat with journalists in Umuahia, the state capital.

He added that the African Development Bank has also approved some funds for the state.

The governor said, “Two days ago, the Islamic Development Bank approved the sum of $125m for us under AB Seed, as well as the African Development Bank, AfDB. All is yet to be drawn until after perfection.

“We have received offers of loan from commercial banks, but we have not drawn on any of them. We do not want to draw loans until we need them and will repay when we have liquidity, and we will pay later.”

On wage awards or salary increase, the governor assured workers that his administration had not withdrawn its promise on that, stating that there is already a committee in place on the matter.

“We had promised that by the end of this month, we will resolve the lingering pension issues. In our executive council meeting today, we had some resolutions, and soon, pensioners will be settled,” he said.

According to him, the local government accounts are not tampered with, stating, “Mayors are grading roads and building health centres. I don’t know where else they are getting the money from.”

On infrastructure, the governor said, “Abia will continue with our massive road rehabilitation, light up Abia, improvement in the health system and the resolve to retrieve education system that has been going down”, adding that 170 primary schools and 51 secondary schools have been earmarked to be rehabilitated so that at the end of the year, all schools will be fully rehabilitated.

He said the state government has designed the best models for Abia schools so that “the Abia standard schools will look a certain way.”

He added that trained teachers will teach students what is relevant in the 21st century, including the internet, renewable energy, and digital technology, among others to make Abia students competitive in line with global practices.

However, the state government, he said, would ensure the quality and skills necessary to teach the students by ensuring the right training for the teachers, stating “We have received lots of support from multilateral agencies. We are not alone. ”

On health, he said, “We will continue to improve healthcare delivery in the state”, stating also that in terms of food security, the state has a lot of initiatives to deal with hunger and is working round the clock to ensure that all lands in Abia will be cultivated this planting season.

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