Kwara debt profile hits N29 billion

Tunde Akanbi, Ilorin

The Kwara State government says it has a debt profile of about N29 billion from commercial banks and bailout fund.

The State Commissioner for Planning and Economic Development, Wasiu Odewale disclosed this on Tuesday while speaking at the second series of Ministerial Press briefing organised by the Ministry of Information and Communications as part of activities marking the one year in office of State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed led administration.

The Commissioner noted that the debt profile of the state is very low due to prudent management of the resources in the State.

According to him, the State has the capacity to access loans to grow infrastructural facilities in such a way that each local government in the State would have Small Scale industries.

He said this would be achieved through partnership with the Bank of Industry, stating that it would also enable the State government to meet the 17 Sustainable Development Goals that would serve as the basis for the developmental plan of the State.

Speaking on the activities of the Kwara State Community Development Agency, Mr Odewale said the State government would this week receive N350 million counterparts fund from the World Bank.

According to him, this fund would be disbursed to all the 193 wards in the State to embark on meaningful projects that would have direct impact on the living standard of the people with each ward receiving a minimum of N5 million.

Also speaking, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Dr Muideen Akorede debunked the rumour that the State government had stopped the proposed bond, saying that government would take bond to fund infrastructure and is looking for the cheapest and best option to fund it.

Dr Akorede disclosed that the State government through the Kwara Internal Revenue Service created two thousand direct and indirect jobs in the last one year.

He attributed the strike embarked upon by the Workers of Colleges of Education to inability of the students to pay school fees which would serve as revenue to augment the salaries of the Workers.

The State government has employed about 213 various health workers to strengthen the health sector.

More workforces
The State Commissioner for Health, Suleiman Atolagbe said the medical personnel who were spread across all medical areas of specialisation were employed as a result of the shortfall of workforce, pointing out that the total number of health personnel in the State now stands at 1,965.

According to him, the Ministry now has health workforce registry to capture the number of health personnel to give health services to the people.

The Commissioner disclosed that the government has also procured two dialysis machines at the rate of N23 million to cater for the patients of dialysis.

On the issue of immunisation, Mr Atolagbe said the government has embarked on vigorous immunisation campaign in line with the Universal healthcare coverage in tertiary, secondary and primary healthcare.

The Commissioner for Health noted that about two thousand patients had benefited from eye surgical operations and provision of eye glasses in partnership with MTN foundation.

On Community Health Insurance Scheme, Mr Atolagbe said the government had received a counterpart fund of N100 million from Hygeia.