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Ikpeazu presents N136.6b 2020 budget estimates to lawmakers

Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, Monday, presented his government’s 2020 budget estimates of about N136.618billion to the state lawmakers in session.

The budget tagged: “Budget of Economic Re-positioning,” comprises N66.802billion or 48.90 per cent as Recurrent Expenditure, and N69.815billion about 51.10 per cent as Capital Expenditure.

The Governor told the lawmakers that the budget outlay is slightly less than that of 2019 of about N140.945billion, adding that the moderate decrease is occasioned by his government’s resolve to formulate a realistic budget while working hard to improve revenue generation and expenditure management approach.

According to him, despite the economic challenges, the government is determined to reposition Abis State on a new foundation for growth and has keyed into the State Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability as well as other partnerships initiatives. These are aimed at enhancing efficiency in the state’s financial processes and would continue to sharpen the process of participatory budgeting with the involvement of communities, civil society groups, private sector agencies, and other stakeholders.

He added that the 2020 draft estimates are intended to strategically strengthen his achievements in areas such as creating a 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.

He said: “Our watchword in the 2020 budget implementation shall be Prudence in State Resource Management.

“In 2020 fiscal year, 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).

“We will work to ensure completion of ongoing projects while re-envisioning new ones that will open new frontiers with determination to eliminate waste and unjustified expenditures that are not directly linked to the policy objectives espoused in this document.”

He explained that “In preparing this 2020-2022 Multi-year Budget, consideration was given to effective and efficient resource allocation and utilisation,” adding that certain factors, including prioritisation of peoples’ needs, identification, and harmonization of revenue-generating windows, re-jigging of Agencies, among others were considered.

The lawmakers through the Speaker Rt. Hon. Chinedum Orji commended the Governor for his timely presentation of the budget estimates to the State House of Assembly and promised a speedy passage.

He reiterated the lawmakers’ support for the Governor, through their oversight functions, which he said are not meant to witch-hunt anyone, but to realise the Governor’s projects.

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