A coalition of project monitoring partners and other observers have urged the Jigawa State government to give priority to manpower recruitment and development rather than building structures in its 2024 budget.
The call was made during a town hall meeting organised by Elip Initiative in collaboration with the state Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning to generate citizens’ inputs for consideration in the preparation of the state’s 2024 budget.
In his presentation, the chairman of the coalition of civil societies working around budget and project monitoring, Comrade Isa Mustapha, stated that the group had assessed the state budget in the last eight years and there was need to redesign spending patterns.
He said; “In the last eight years Jigawa has budgeted N164 .7 billion and spent N112 billion on the health sector, it budgeted N422.5 billion and spent N313 .6 billion on education sector, on agriculture it budgeted
N76 billion and spent N 22 billion, for environment N19.1 billion was budgeted while N18, 8 billion was spent on road construction.
“Despite all these huge spendings, Jigawa still has the highest rate of maternal and child deaths, the learning outcome and foundation skill is very poor, poverty and child stunting are increasing, e-economic activities are falling.
“So, based on our observation, we understand that there is a huge gap in human capital development spending, while education, health and other critical sectors of public services have acute shortage of manpower, this is what hindered the huge spending from translating into meaningful results.”
The commissioner for budget and economic Planning, Hon. Babangida Umar, described the meeting as very critical in achieving an all-inclusive budget and promised to continue considering citizens’ inputs in the state budget process.
He said in the past four years Jigawa had been receiving awards and commendations from FCDO and other independent agencies for budget performance and transparency.