Gombe State Commissioner of Finance and Economic Development, Alhaji Muhammad Gambo Magaji has advocated the upward review of the current revenue sharing formula in favour of states in view of enormous challenges facing them as well as exigencies of contemporary times.
Making the presentation at the Zonal Public Hearing on Review of Revenue Allocation Formula by Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) he added that the huge responsibilities bestowed on states and local governments by the constitution under the Residual and Concurrent lists make it imperative for review of the current revenue sharing formula.
“Resulting from the enormity of responsibilities bestowed on states and local governments by the constitution, Nigerian states are currently grappling with serious shortages of resources owing partly to rapid increases in demand for the following services, among others.”
The commissioner added that states are increasingly investing in higher education due to rising youth population and the inadequacy of existing Federal government owned institutions to cater for the educational needs of the youths and this in addition to their statutory responsibility of providing education.
He noted that sustainability of the federation and to enhance the viability of states and the local government, there is the need for an upward review of the current revenue allocation formula which gives the federal government 52 per cent against states and local government that receives smaller allocation.
In Gombe State, the security expenditure has been rising annually due to communal clashes, farmers/herders clashes and the influx of internally displaced persons IDPs from affected states making it possible to demand for upward review.
He said Gombe is severely affected by the phenomenon of climate change and environmental degradation, especially desert encroachment and the gully erosion making insignificant the investment being made from the meagre resources of the state in combating menace of gully erosion and land degradation.