By Raymomd Osho
ABEOKUTA – Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun on Wednesday, December 2, 2020, presented a total budget estimate of N339 billion as the 2021 Appropriation Bill before the members of the State House of Assembly.
The bill comprised of N162 billion for recurrent expenditure and N177 billion for various capital projects for the next fiscal year.
Abiodun hinged the budget, christened ” Budget of Recovery and Sustainability” on the ISEYA mantra of the present administration and other functional classifications.
A sum of N119 billion was allocated as internally generated revenues with N59 billion expected from the federation account, while capital receipt was fixed at N142 billionc, omprising internal and external loans including grants and aid.
According to the Governor, the total overhead costs of ministries, departments and agencies was projected at N50 billion for the next fiscal year, which represents an increase of N11 billion from N39 billion in 2020, adding that the State had made provision for the sum of N28.4 billion for debt servicing in 2021.
Giving the breakdown of the 2021 proposal, he stated that education sector was allocated N58 billion, N75 billion proposed for economic affairs, with N49 billion to cater for general public services, while health would gulp N35 billion with housing & community amenities having N28 billion allocation.
Others included social and environmental protection which were given N5 billion estimate, while N9 billion was expected to take care of public order and safety, with recreation, culture and religion given N7 billion and the remaining N73 billion for Statewide services, including public debt charges, stabilization fund, pensions and gratuities.
The Governor explained that the State Government’s fiscal policy would be geared towards improving the efficiency and effectiveness of spending and achieving a better balance between capital and recurrent expenditure.
Abiodun added that the investment focus of the State was to create an enabling environment for business, reduce the identified infrastructure gap as well as provide fiscal stimulus to lift demand.
His words “Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, let me now highlight some key elements of the performance of Year 2020 Budget. You will recall that N450 billion was initially approved as Year 2020 Budget. However, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, all the assumptions underlining the 2020 Budget became unrealistic and unattainable.
“This necessitated an obvious need to review downward the approved 2020 Budget. Thus, we forwarded a Bill to the House in July, this year to review the 2020 Budget down to N281bn (38% decrease).
He added “I recall and commend the House once again for the sense of responsibility and dispatch with which this Honourable House treated the request and passed the revised 2020 Budget accordingly. In the 2020 Revised Budget, the total projected revenue is N281Bn, comprising of N114Bn as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and N38Bn as expected inflows from the Statutory Allocation and Value Added Tax. However, as at 31st of October 2020, actual total revenue was N92bn, representing 42 percent of the pro-rated revenue target”.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Speaker of the Ogun State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Olakunle Oluomo, stated that the presentation being a constitutional requirement for all elected governors was in consonance with provisions of Section 121 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
He said “If we care to look up in this chamber and conduct a tour of office accommodation in the complex, the enormous needs of this legislature will be apparent; in fact regular maintenance has kept it up to this state as the structure was constructed 1979. In effect, we wish to appeal to His Excellency to come to the aid of the House in fixing the problem of office accommodation of the legislature in the State, if done, it will stand as a signature project of the present administration in the State”.