Abia Governor,Dr Okezie Ikpeazu has presented a budget of one hundred and fourty billion,nine hundred and thirty nine million,six hundred and ninety one thousand,seven hundred and sixty five naira(N140,939,691,766)to the state house of Assembly for the 2018 fiscal year.
The 2018 Budget s shows 28.15% increase over the 2017 outlay of N111,728,162,580.
Presenting the budget christened budget of partnership and opportunities to the state house of assembly,the Governor said capital expenditure is seventy two billion four hundred and sixty million,five hundred thousand naira only while recurrent is sixty eighth billion,four hunndred and seventy nine million,one hundred and ninety one thousand,seven hunndred and sixty five naira only.
” the Budget is packaged to follow the Medium Term Expenditure Framework which looks at projections for 3-year plan period. This Budget therefore has projections for years 2018 to 2020, and is compliant with International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS)”.
According to the Governor,the marginal increase over the total outlay is as a result of the current realities of the economy of Nigeria.
“The State is committed to fiscal management process in line with International best practices, making our State Investment-Friendly to foreign investors. This Budget is therefore packaged with the right policy formulation, fiscal planning, budget analysis, accountability and routine financial management”.
“Much as the economy of Nigeria is said to be out of recession, EconomicIndicators (i.e. rises in the rate of inflation, interest rate, decrease in Foreign Direct Investment, etc) show that we are still not near getting out of the woods. This has greatly determined the direction of our projection and informed the theme of the budget. The 2018 Budget is christened “Budget of Partnerships and Opportunities”.
“This clearly shows Government’s direction and the need for all to tag along. In the present economic uncertainties facing Nigeria as a country (which Abia State is part of), we need to look beyond our borders in search of partnerships and endeavour to take full advantage of the opportunities such partnerships present to keep the State going. We must also take steps to show tenacity, frugalityand transparency in our financial management style as partnerships can only be attracted in such financial management climate”.
He said the 2018 budget is designed in such a way to align the 5pillars of development of his administration with the SDGs,adding that the government will nnot lose anny grounds but rather consolidate on the achievements already recorded inn the period 2015 to 2017.
He said that his government will increase the return on internally Generated Revenue in 2018.
“Mr. Speaker, Honourable members of the House of Assembly, let me emphasize here that the outcome of this Budget is expected to give Abians access to quality agricultural produce; unhindered qualitative and affordable healthcare; access to qualitative education; security for all and a quantum lift to commercial activities.
“Aba is critical to the improvement of our IGR. Therefore we are not going to relent in our effort in 2018 to sustain the vibrancy of the commercial capital of Abia State so that it can operate at maximum capacity”.