John Shiklam in Kaduna
The Kaduna State Government has presented a budget proposal of N257.9 billion for the 2020 fiscal year.
Making the presentation before the state House of Assembly yesterday, the acting Governor, Hajiya Hadiza Balarabe, announced that the state government would introduce free secondary school education in 2020.
“From 2020, every child in Kaduna State is required to have 12 years of free, compulsory primary and secondary education,” she said.
According to her, the budget, which is made up of N190.03 billion capital expenditure and N67.87 billion recurrent expenditure, advances the ‘Putting People First Agenda’ of the state government.
She said most of the capital spending would be in the economic and social sectors, in keeping faith with the administration’s governance agenda.
Education, health and infrastructure have capital allocations amounting to about N140 billion more than 73 per cent of the proposed capital budget.
Capital spending on education will gulp N44.9 billion; health N30.29 billion, while N64.9 billion will be spent on works and public infrastructure.
The acting governor said the pillars of human capital development would be further strengthened by introducing 12 years of free primary and secondary education making it compulsory for all children in Kaduna State, as well as the completion of the renovation of more primary schools in the state.
Balarabe also unfolded the state government legislative agenda to ensure legal backings for the ongoing reforms in the state. She noted that most of the reforms being implemented require fresh legislation or amendments to extant laws.
“We intend to approach the state Assembly with panoply of bills to improve the governance of the state,” she said.
According to her, the proposed bills will include the Finance Bill, which will specify amendments to the Tax Code, including the introduction of revised development levy and land use charges for all property in urban areas of the state.
Others, she said, would include an Education Bill to extend free and compulsory education to the Senior Secondary level for all students; the enforcement of the UBE Act, Child Welfare and Protection Law, the Street Hawking (Prohibition) Law, the state Primary Health Care Development Amendment (or re-enactment) Bill, the Social Protection Bill, Chieftaincy and Traditional Councils Bill and Family Court and Small Claims Court (Establishment) Bills among others.
“As we strengthen governance in the second term, we will vigorously implement the ‘Putting People First’ agenda.
“We will continue to privilege the interest of ordinary people, promote equal opportunity and attract investments to our state. The time is short, so we cannot allow any distractions. We shall not waver in making life better for the people of Kaduna State,” the acting governor said.