In a piece recently released by the Punch, it has listed Lagos, Kaduna, Cross River, Ogun and Oyo occupied the top position on the list of external debts incurred by state governments as of June 30, 2012.
According to the list, Lagos topped the list of external debtors with $517,677,672 as of June 30, 2012. Next to Lagos is Kaduna with $197,155.525 foreign debt. Cross River comes next with $109,351,503 external debt. Following Cross River is Ogun State as the fourth most indebted state with $96,285.547 as of June 30, 2012. Oyo is the fifth most indebted state as far as external debt is concerned with $78,878,401 being owed as of June 30, 2012.
However, while the other four states depend heavily on federal allocations, Lagos generates huge internal revenue, which was about N23bn monthly in the first quarter of the year. The Punch investigations have also shown that the present administrations in Ogun and Oyo inherited the foreign debts from their predecessors.
Also, states, whose external debts are low, include Borno ($12,726,028); Delta ($15,785,110); Plateau ($20,190,627); Taraba ($20,681,527) and Anambra ($25,370,842). Just recently, renowned professor, Pat Utomi had condemned the way the states of the country depend too heavily on money from the Federal Government coffers. It is about time these states started thinking seriously about how to increase their Internally Generated revenue (IGR).