By Segun Awofadeji in Bauchi
Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar has presented the 2019 budget estimate of N196.7 billion to the Bauchi State House of Assembly which focuses on priority areas of health, education, agriculture, water supply, youth and women empowerment and infrastructural development.
The budget proposal which is put on ratio of 40:60 recurrent and capital expenditure, respectively emphasises on the completion of all ongoing projects and programmes, while embarking upon on new ones only where they become necessary.
The 2019 budget estimate has N79.2 billion, or 40% on recurrent expenditure while capital expenditure receives N117.5 billion, representing 60% of the total budget estimates, which the governor said was a clear “demonstration of our resolve to the provision of infrastructure which is the bedrock for economic development of the State.”
Under the recurrent estimates in the 2019 budget, N125.5 billion is estimated as recurrent revenue, made up of N17.141 billion internally generated revenue and N108.3 statutory allocation, whereas N79.196 is estimated as the recurrent expenditure.
The recurrent expenditure is broken down into N35.3 billion personnel cost, N26.399 overhead cost and N17.488 as consolidated revenue charges. The consolidated revenue fund comprises of N10 billion as pension and gratuity, and N6.672 billion for public debt charges/debt servicing.
Governor Abubakar explained that the 2018 budget had been largely successful as the economy was beginning to stabilise, owing to prudence in management of meagre resources in government coffers.
“Out of the budgeted recurrent revenue of N101.4 billion, the sum of N64.4 billion was realised, representing 63.49% as at June 2018, while independent revenue generation was N6.8 billion as at September, 2018,” the governor explained.
According to the governor, the projected capital receipts in 2018 stood at N53. 143 billion and the sum of N21.260 billion, representing 39.78% was recorded as actual receipts as at June 2018, while aids and grants actual receipts as at June 2018 stood N8. 129 billion.
He said the path to growth had always been difficult, but not insurmountable, and pointed out that tremendous achievements had been recorded in the face of the difficult situation under which the administration came into being.
While observing that Bauchi is gradually moving up the ladder in terms of economic development due to the administration’s efforts in investing in sectors that are key to the economic development of the State, Governor Abubakar observed that the nation’s economy was gradually being recovered, resulting in the growth being experienced at both state and national levels.
“Bauchi State and indeed the entire country is on the path of growth as major economic indicators such as employment, inflation, Gross Domestic Product, exchange rates, and foreign reserves are all moving positively.
“The change mantra of our great party, the APC, is no more a slogan but a legacy of prudence, accountability, transparency and openness. This legacy will further be maintained by moving the State to the next level of prosperity, economic growth, security, and the general well-being of our people,” he added.
The governor thanked the citizens of the state for refusing to be “deceived by agents of transgression” because the struggle for leadership in Bauchi state and indeed the country as a whole is a fight between the liberation of the masses through sustained economic growth within the context of equity, fairness for a better life of dignity which the APC stands for and continuity with the old order of massive corruption with impunity as personified by the opposition.”
He applauded the confidence reposed in his administration, and assured them of his commitment towards fulfilling the covenant upon which he was elected into office. He promised to take the state to greater heights by bringing the dividends of democracy to the doorsteps of the citizens.
Governor Abubakar also thanked the leadership and membership of the House for the cooperation they have been extending to him the last three years, “which has given us the required legislative backing to discharge our mandate towards improving the lives of our people.”