Alhaji Mohammadu Hassan the Gombe state Commissioner of finance and economic development, has said that the state government will focus on the completion of on going projects in the state rather than embarking on new ones.
He said it will be unwise for government to award new projects in 2018 while most of the existing ones were yet to be completed or commission.
“It will be unwise to embark on new projects while those on going are not completed. We will definitely complete all ongoing projects. Those that have been completed will be commission so that the people of Gombe can benefit from them.”
Hassan gave the assurance on Thursday evening in Gombe while giving an overview of the 2018 budget proposal tagged “Budget of Enhance Growth and Development “.
He said most of the projects executed by the Dankwambo administration and those inherited from past administration will be commissioned this year and government will continue to enhance the numerous achievements recorded in the previous budgets towards effective service delivery.
The commissioner who gave a breakdown on recurrent and capital releases to Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) from January to October under the 2017 Appropriation Act, said recurrent releases to MDAs under the 2017 budget was N34.624 billion.
A breakdown of the recurrent expenditure for 2018 showed that personnel cost including overhead cost, statutory office holders salaries, public debt charges, pension and gratuities will gulp N51.987 billion an increase of 13%.
Hassan said because governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo is concern with the welfare of retired workers government decided to make a proposal of N4.5 billion for pension and gratuities in the 2018 fiscal year an increase of 32% compared to the N2.551 billion budgeted in 2017.
On the releases for capital expenditures, the honourable commissioner said that N15.842 billion had been release as at October 2017 out of the N40.744 billion appropriated.
He further disclosed that N52.934 billion has been appropriated for 2018 fiscal year to cover capital expenditure which shows an increase of 183%
Hassan said spending on capital projects was increased in the 2018 fiscal year to enable government consolidate or complete all on going projects in some key sectors such as education which got a proposal of N19.290 billion, physical infrastructure N13.725 billion, health N9.667 billion, water and sanitation N5.12 billion.
He noted that, despite the series of financial challenges couple with the recession that the country went through last year, the state scored averagely in terms budget performance and implementation.
The commissioner then reaffirm government commitment to ensuring transparency, accountability, observance of due process and discipline in the implementation of the 2018 budget.
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