Governor Rotimi Amaechi
Kwankwaso presents N235.3bn as Taraba proposes N73.4bn
Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt,Ibrahim Shuaibu in Kano and Wole Ayodele in Jalingo â€¨
Rivers State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, has presented a budget proposal of N490.32 billion for the 2013 fiscal year to the state House of Assembly.
In Kano, Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, presented the 2013 Appropriation Bill of N235,304,929,000 to the state House of Assembly, while Taraba State Acting Governor, Alhaji Garba Umar, presented a budget proposal of N73,415,972,736.00 to the state House of Assembly for consideration and passage as 2013 Appropriation Bill.
But, Amaechi, while presenting the proposal to the Assembly yesterday, said the proposed 2013 budget was N52.32 billion higher than the N438 billion appropriated for 2012, which was an increase of about 11.95 per cent.
He revealed that out of the amount proposed, N314.30 billion was for capital expenditure while recurrent expenditure was put at N176.02 billion.
The governor noted that the figures for 2012 were N323.70 billion for capital expenditure and N114.25 billion for recurrent expenditure.
“These proposed expenditures show a sharp increase of 54.06 per cent in recurrent expenditure and a decline 2.92 per cent in capital expenditure compared to the 2012 Budget respectively. Capital expenditure projection for 2013 is 64.10 per cent of the total budget while recurrent expenditure is 35.90 per cent of the budget,” he explained.
He stressed that good governance has been a hallmark of his administration, saying, “In 2013, we will intensify our efforts at improving the public service both in terms of capacity building and re-engineering the business processes of government and provision of motivations.”
On the key policy thrust for 2013, Amaechi said: “The 2013 budget will be implemented based on the following policy assumptions and guidelines: balancing the budget structure to ensure that recurrent spending is financed from Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and heading towards achieving a ratio of 30 per cent: 70 per cent for recurrent to capital expenditure.
“With the reengineering of the Board of Internal Revenue (BIR), the average monthly revenue of N6.5 billion in this current year is expected to improve to a minimum of N7.5 billion per month in 2013. At full capacity we expect the 2013 monthly recurrent expenditure items of salaries, overheads and monthly pensions currently averaging N8.5 billion to be funded from IGR.”
Amaechi assured the people that the on-going road reconstruction and rehabilitation works within Port Harcourt and its environs would be intensified.
He said: “We are hopeful, Honourable Speaker, to approach the capital market in the first quarter of 2013 and conclude our first Bond issuance for N100 billion. It is necessary to emphasise that the bond proceeds would be applied only on specific projects as outlined in the bond documents.
“This is to facilitate movement of goods and services from the Airport to Seaport, provide connectivity between the Old and The New City, decongest the Old City of traffic and improve access to Airport, the New City and Onne Seaport,” he said.
Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Hon. Otelemaba Amachree, while assuring the governor that the lawmakers would look into the proposals quickly, said the Assembly would intensify its oversight functions in the coming year to ensure the strict implementation of the act that would be passed.
On his part, Kwankwaso, while presenting the budget tagged: “Budget of Economic Consolidation and Fiscal Discipline”, the governor noted that the budget is made up of capital expenditure totalling N175, 510,102,000, or 75 per cent, while the recurrent expenditure was N59,794,827,000, representing 25 per cent.
“The 2013 budget will not only consolidate our development efforts but will ensure frugal and efficiency in our expenditure programmes. We intend to use the limited resources at our disposal to achieve maximum impact,” Kwankwaso maintained.
Meanwhile, Umar, while presenting the budget to the Assembly, said the budget would place emphasis on agriculture, rural infrastructure (electricity, water and roads), education, health, tourism and security which according to him have the potential to revolutionise the economy of the state.
He noted that the budget estimates, which were made up of N38,830,087,672.00 (52.18 per cent) recurrent expenditure and N34,585,885,064.00 (47.82 per cent) capital expenditure was expected to be financed through Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and statutory allocation from the federation account.
Besides, Umar disclosed that other sources of financing the budget included Value Added Tax (VAT), the state’s share of Subsidy Reinvestment Programme (SURE-P) as well as capital receipts.
Umar, however, noted that the state 2013-2015 Medium Term Expenditure Framework/Fiscal Strategy Paper which he had earlier forwarded to the Assembly would be the basis for the 2013 budget as enshrined in Section 18 (1) of the Taraba State Fiscal Responsibility Law 2011.
He further noted that the State Executive Council (SEC) during its deliberation on the budget had concluded plans to take the issue of IGR seriously through direct involvement of MDAs in the monitoring of the collection and accounting for the revenue collected from all sources.