WEALTH CREATION REACHES COMMITTEE STAGE

The Lagos State House of Assembly has committed the Bill on Wealth Creation to the House Committees on Finance and Wealth Creation, with a mandate to scrutinize the document for subsequent passage.

The motion for the second reading of the Bill was moved by the Majority Leader, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade and seconded by another member, Hon. Bisi Yusuff.

Leading the debate, Chairman, House Committee on Finance, Hon. Oluyinka Ogundimu said objectives of the Bill were embedded in Section 2, explaining that “It was meant to provide financial support for residents of the state on job creation.”

The Fund, according to him would be headed by a Chairman and Executive Secretary and managed by the Commissioner for Wealth Creation and his counterpart from Finance or their representatives.

The lawmaker also pointed out that for the 2016 budget to perform optimally, it would require proper implementation of the Bill if eventually passed into law, saying 60 percent of the budget would be financed through Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).

He further explained that to get enough IGR to finance 2016 budget, job creation would be paramount in order to have more people that would pay taxes.

Also speaking, Chairman House Committee on Wealth Creation, Hon. Sola Giwa said the essence of the Bill was to open up entrepreneurial skills of the people.

The Lagos Island Constituency II representative also hinted that large chunk of the money would be provided through collaboration with the private sector.

On his part, Hon. Rotimi Olowo said another important aspect of the Bill was that interest rate on the loans only attract 3 percent for administrative purposes.

However, the Chief Whip, Hon. Rotimi Abiru observed that “it is not expressly stated in the Bill the method of disbursement and the way to recoup the loans.”

Hon. David Setonji said membership of the Board should be spread. According to him, “we should not limit it to metropolis. I think ‘IBILE’ should be spelt out.”

Hon. Gbolahan Yishawu canvassed for insurance on the loans, saying the loans must be insured in case beneficiaries were unable to pay back.

Hon. Bayo Osinowo explained that the tenure of the chairman of the Board would have to be reviewed. He argued that since it would be a fund of N26bn over a period of four years, four year-tenure should be looked into.
It would be recalled that the State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode had forwarded the Bill on Wealth Creation to the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa with a view to stem the alarming rate of unemployment in the State.

After much deliberations, the bill was committed to Committees on Finance and Wealth Creation for careful scrutiny and they are expected to submit reports on 31st December.

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