Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State yesterday presented a budget proposal of N136,617,847,316 for the 2020, saying his administration was determined to reposition the state to attain economic growth.
The draft, which the governor presented on the floor of the state House of Assembly for consideration, comprised a recurrent expenditure of N66,802,247,316, representing 48.90 per cent and a capital outlay of N69,825,600,000 or 51.10 per cent.
He added that the budget christened: “Budget of Economic Repositioning” was prepared in tune with the current economic realities, hence the marginal decrease over the 2019 budget of N140,944,885,770.
Ikpeazu assured that he was determined to steer Abia State to a new foundation for sustainable economic growth, adding that the state has already keyed into the state Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability as well as the other partnership initiatives with the aim of enhancing efficiency in its financial processes.
The governor said he would continue to sharpen the process of participatory budgeting with the involvement of communities, civil society groups, private sector agencies and other stakeholders.
According to him, the budget estimate was intended to strategically strengthen his achievements in various sectors of the economy by creating conducive environment for local and foreign investors, providing opportunities for human capital development, revitalising social services as well as building critical infrastructure for sustainable development.
“Our watchword in the 2020 budget implementation shall be prudence in state resource management,” he said, adding that adequate consideration was given to effective and efficient resource allocation and utilisation in making the budget.
To this end, premium priority, he said, was given to people’s needs, identification and harmonisation of revenue generating windows, re-jigging of agencies, among others.
“We shall further strengthen governance with renewed commitment to people’s well being through intense citizens engagement and Community Needs Identification Initiative (CNII) in project selection to meet the Community Charter of Demand (CCD),” he said.
He noted that his focus remains to change the economic development template of the state and strategic partnerships shall be the fulcrum and main driver of the vision for the year 2020.
The governor assured that “in 2020, we will work to ensure completion of ongoing projects while re-envisioning new ones that will open new frontiers.”
The Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Chinedum Orji, in his remarks, commended the governor for the timely presentation of the budget estimate to the legislature and promised speedy passage of the 2020 state appropriation bill.
He pledged that the lawmakers would continue to support the governor through their oversight functions