by Isi Esene
The Rivers State government is wondering what the fuss is all about with reports going the rounds that it bought a private jet for $50m.
The state chapter of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) had accused the Rotimi Amaechi government of spending $50m on a new jet which, according to the party, is unnecessary.
The government, through its commissioner for information, Ibim Semenitari, yesterday described the allegations as “false and baseless” saying the private jet was purchased two years ago at a cost of $45m.
Semenitari said, “The cost of the aircraft is $45 million. The government of Rivers State traded in two previous aircraft, the Dash 8 and the Embraer jet.”
She reportedly explained the motive behind the purchase of the new jet saying it has a bigger body and it is cheaper to maintain.
She also denied allegations that the jet belongs to the governor saying the process for the purchase was open and transparent.
“The aircraft is not used only by the governor of Rivers State. Governor Amaechi does not own a personal jet.
“The jet was paid for by the government of Rivers State and brought in by the ministry of transport, Rivers State, whose job is to manage all of the vehicles that belong to the state government.” she said.