The palace of the Oba of Benin, will receive ₦319.6 million from the pot.
Chris Nehikhare, the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, disclosed this information during a press briefing held in Benin.
He explained, “The sum of ₦1.3 billion is being allocated to traditional rulers. Within the Edo South Senatorial District, traditional rulers are set to receive ₦639.2 million. Notably, the Benin Traditional Council, situated in the Oba of Benin’s palace, will be granted ₦319.6 million. Additionally, traditional rulers across the remaining seven local government areas within this district will collectively share ₦255.7 million.”
“In the Edo Central region, traditional rulers are earmarked to obtain ₦299.8 million, while in Edo North district, a sum of ₦377.6 million will be divided among traditional rulers,” he elaborated.
The commissioner clarified that the allocation to traditional rulers was enhanced due to the inclusion of Value Added Tax (VAT) and the surplus crude components in the distribution process.
Nehikhare addressed allegations that had been circulating suggesting that the state government had withheld the monthly subvention to the Benin Traditional Council. He dismissed these claims, asserting that, in fact, the funding for traditional rulers increased under Governor Godwin Obaseki’s administration.
He acknowledged, however, that at a certain point, traditional rulers in the state had mutually agreed with the government to temporarily set aside the funds due to internal disagreements. This decision was taken until the underlying administrative issues were resolved.
“It’s important to clarify that contrary to the misleading information asserting that funds were withheld from July 2022 to July 2023, all legally mandated payments were made up until April 2023. Subsequently, an agreement was reached to defer the release of funds for the purpose of addressing outstanding matters.”
“These administrative matters have now been successfully resolved through collaboration between the Edo State Government and a delegation from the palace, headed by Chief Sam Igbe, the Iyase of Benin.”
“The allocated funds are now in the process of being disbursed to various traditional rulers across the state, including the Benin Traditional Council,” Nehikhare concluded.