The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has disbursed over N13 billion to area councils in the last two years and two months.
This disclosure was made by Joshua Kaura, FCTA Secretary for Area Councils Services Secretariat (ACSS) while briefing the press in Abuja on the occasion of their midterm interface with the media.
He said though the Secretariat was a policy and service provision organ, not a construction arm, it facilitates social, political and physical development of the Territory.
Listing some of the major achievements of the Secretariat within the period under consideration, Kaura said it has been “providing secretarial services to JAAC (Joint Account Allocation Committee) meetings and other activities with its sub-committees through which the sum of N13, 828, 010, 037. 06 was disbursed to the six FCT area councils from January, 2015 to April, 2017. It has equally coordinated issues relating to internally generated revenue in the area councils, he said.
According to him, the secretariat also, within this period, audited Local Education Authority (LEA) staff, harmonization of area councils’ environmental sanitation by-laws, as well as intervention in the recent flood incidents that hit Kwali, Kuje and Abaji councils.
He said it was the Secretariat that facilitated the release of N1.9 billion bailout funds to all the councils for the settlement of their salary arrears for 2015 and has successfully carried out peaceful resolution in the petition of Balio Nig. Ltd against Bwari Area Council; spearheaded evacuation of Nibrass Huda Islamic sect out of the FCT, carried out sensitisation on voter registration and mobilised about 350 applicants across the councils to benefit from national industrial skills development programme (NISDP).
The Acting Secretary also disclosed that the ACSS intervened in an impending communal clash between MTN and a community in Wumba district, AMAC over non-payment of compensation; and stopped the indiscriminate installation of traditional rulers in the FCT, and as well resolved about 37 chieftaincy and communal clash-related threats to peace and security in FCT.
The ACSS boss challenged the area councils to do more in the area of environmental sanitation and recommended what he called collective action as “sanitation is not a one man’s business” saying that residents have a lot to do.
Information and Communications Director, Mrs. Stella Ojeme who also spoke on this issue urged residents to change their attitude and dump refuse in the giant bins provided by the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), decrying that even where bins are provided, residents preferred dumping the refuse outside the bins.