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Published On: Thu, Sep 5th, 2019

Ajimobi’s govt presented over-bloated 2019 budget, says Makinde

Ajimobi

Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde has revised the state’s 2019 budget from N285 billion to N182.4 billion

Speaking while signing the revised budget into law at the Executive Council Chambers of the Governor’s Office, the governor maintained that the economic status of the state has made it compulsory to review downward what he described as “the over-bloated budget presented by the immediate past administration”.

He said the downward review is imperative in the face of unrealistic funds available to the state to fund the budget.

The governor said: “When we came in, we met a budget of N285 billion. We went on the revenue profile and we are receiving N5 billion monthly from the federal allocation. Our internally generated revenue is N2 billion, making it N7 billion roughly monthly and if I multiply that by 12, that is N84 billion.

“We need to cut our cloth not according to our size, but available material. We came in when money has been spent to the fifth month of the year. We looked at the profile and if we continue on the path at the end of the year, we could only achieve 25 to 38 per cent budget performance.

“So, we decided that our target for the years would be at least 70 per cent budget performance. Of course, we are aware that there may be an issue of ego here, that we may want to feel belong. We want the state to get to the $1 billion budget club. But, I want to give you the assurance that the day we attain that status of $1 billion budget state, under this administration will not be a photo-trick. When we tell the people of Oyo State that we have attained that status, then truly we have attained the status.

“Before we came in, the Ministry of Finance and Budget was lumped together. We thought we have to plan better and we separated the ministries. I also want to thank the Speaker and members of the House for acceding to our request to separate the two ministries.

“Now, we have the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Budget and Planning. What that will do for us is that it will allow us to cut our coat, not according to our size, but according to our materials.”

The Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Mr. Adebo Ogundoyin, who led other lawmakers to the ceremony, said the appropriation bill that was signed into law came at a perfect time, adding that it was the usual norm that budgets are always over-bloated, but the case took a new dimension under the current administration.

“As we all know, most budgets are always over-bloated. But his excellency, in his own wisdom, decided to review the budget according to our available resources. There is no way you can plan for a state without having the actual revenue well-accounted for and well-appropriated. This is a welcome development.

“The budget of N285 billion that was passed by the 8th assembly was an over-bloated budget and there is no way we can really assess our performance in terms of budget assessment and plan for the future. By looking at the previous budgets, you could tell that the state had no defined plan for a long term plan and the administration in charge at the time just did things as they came,” Speaker Ogundoyin noted.

The Assembly had on Tuesday passed the reviewed 2019 Appropriation Bill after it scaled through the third reading.

The new bill, which saw the initial N285 billion passed by the Eight Assembly and signed into law by the immediate past governor cut down to N182.4 billion, saw the 100 per cent subvention restored to all the state-owned institutions.

With the new appropriation, which saw N103 billion reduced from the ex-Governor Ajimobi’s N285 billion, the recurrent expenditure was jacked up from N94.2 billion to N98.7 billion as proposed by the executive as well as the capital expenditure increased from N76.7 billion to N83.6 billion.

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