By Obinna Ogbonnaya, Abakaliki
#Commissions House of Assembly complex
The Ebonyi State Governor, Chief David Umahi Friday presented an appropriation bill of N208, 332, 100 to the Ebonyi State House of Assembly for their consideration and passage into law as the state budget for 2018 fiscal year.
Presenting the bill at the chamber’s of the State House of Assembly Nkaliki road Abakaliki, Ebonyi state capital, Chief Umahi stated that in the Recurrent Revenue, the expected sources of Revenue for 2018 Fiscal Year would include bank opening, statutory allocation and internally generates revenue.
The budget, according to the State Governor is tagged budget “Divine Manifestation”.
According to him, Banks Opening Balances brought forward stands at 18.889 9.07, statutory Allocation from Federal Government 72.916 35.00, internally Generated Revenue stands at 13.965 6.70
Others 2.00 0.96, while loan (Internal and External) 100.562 48.26, total Expected Receipts for 2018 budget 208.332 100
Governor Umahi stated that in the above revenue sources, the inflow from Federation Account amounts to N72.916bn or 35% of the State’s 2018 Budget Estimates. “This includes statutory allocation and the component of the capital receipt, which includes: Value Added Tax share of Exchange Rate Gain; non oil Revenue Reimbursement from the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Other sources include: N18.889bn unutilized dedicated funds that will be carried forward as the opening bank balance for the financial year; N100.562bn internal loan and N13.965bn from Internally Generated Revenue (IGR)”.
The State Governor insisted that the State Government intends to increase her tax revenue in the 2018 Fiscal Year by aggressively diversifying into numerous untapped tax revenue sources.
He stated tht the pllan became imperative consequent upon the Federal Government’s de-emphasis on oil revenue and the impending austerity measures aimed at cutting the cost of public sector governance. “The revenue source to be strategized includes landed property documentation, fines and fees, among others.
Governor Umahi stated that in the 2018 Fiscal Year, the Expenditure ratio between Recurrent Expenditure and the Capital Expenditure stands at 20.8% to 79.20% adding that Recurrent Expenditure will gulp N43.326bn (including inbuilt contingency fund of N3bn that will be mainly expended in unforeseen areas of recurrent needs), while the Capital Expenditure will gulp N165.004bn inclusive of contingency provision of N5.5bn for capital projects.
Governor Umahi said that the Economic Sector in the 2017 budget has a provision of N124.064, thus taking the largest-chunk of the Capital provision. “This is justified on the basis of Government’s serious commitment to commence the construction of flyovers, rehabilitation of urban roads, construction of rural roads, water reticulation in our urban centers among other commitments.
He stated that wiithin the Economic Sub-sector, works and transport has the highest allocation of N96.567bn followed by Ministry of Power with the sum of N4.626bn and the sum of N63.811bn. is shared among other sub-sectors.
The State Governor who expeessed happiness with the budget expenditure of 2017 noted that the state is rising adding that the journey thus far has been extremely tough; “yes, we have had to do extraordinary things in unusual ways; yes, we have been tossed by economic exigencies but we have remained unsinkable. “We have done a great work but there is still a greater work to be done”.
He pointed out that in keeping with the promise of making Abakaliki the best state capital in the country, the State is on course and are almost there within the first 2 years of the administration. “We still have more to do”.
“In keeping with our promise of making Ebonyi State the number one economy through agricultural revolution, we are almost there. At this time last year, Ebonyians paid between N10,000 and N12,000 for a bushel of rice. But because we have kept faith with our promise, Ebonyians today are paying just N5,000 for a bushel of rice – reduction of more than 50%. And yet we still have plenty more to do in this area – the price of chicken most come down to N1,500”..
“In keeping with our promise of securing the life and property of our citizens, we have made giant progress in the resolution of internal conflicts, the crown of which is the final settlement of the Ezillo-Ezza Ezillo conflict. We still have a lot more to do, especially in persuading our neighbouring states to accept our hands of friendly relations”.
The Governor also used the period to commission the reconstructed House of Assembly complex.
Earlier, The Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Hon Francis Nwaifuru commended the state government for the prompt and judicious implementation of the 2017 budget adding that the House of Assembly would ensure steady passage of the 2018 budget.
Rt. Hon Nwifuru urged the Governor to assist the House in the reconstruction of the Speakers residence adding that the residence is no longer befitting and needs urgent attention.
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