The Edo State government will fund next year’s N25 billion budget deficit from the third tranche of a World Bank support facility.
The facility was first obtained during former Governor Adams Oshiomhole’s administration.
Governor Godwin Obaseki spoke yesterday in Benin, the state capital, while presenting the N150,011,831,079 billion 2017 budget estimate to the House of Assembly.
Next year’s budget estimate is 29 per cent higher than last year’s.
The Budget of Consolidation and Prosperity, Obaseki said, was wrapped around six key policy areas.
These, the governor said, include Economic Revolution, Infrastructural Expansion, Institutional Reform, Social Welfare Enhancement, Culture and Tourism as well as Environmental Sustainability.
The budget estimate comprises N74,900,297,917 Recurrent Expenditure and N75,111,533,162 Capital Expenditure.
A breakdown showed that Infrastructure took the lion’s share of N22,299,889,188, while N10,449,113,413 was allocated to Education. Economic Growth and Employment Enablers got N14,721,608,143.
Administration was allocated N4,736,808,082, Law and Justice got N1,840,615,605, Social Sector N24,152,612,144 and Economic sector N44,521,497,331.
Obaseki said the revenue estimate for next year was based on a $42.0 bench mark for crude oil and expectations of improved performance of Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
The governor noted that the budget, if implemented on the six key pillars with uncommon focus, will help the state to build a new society, create jobs, opportunities, wealth and usher in an era of prosperity.
He said the policy direction of the budget was informed by his interactions with Edo residents during his campaigns.
Obaseki said his administration would explore and prepare for Zero Budgeting as well as take a look at the Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy to better manage the public finance.
He said: “Edo State government’s priorities in 2017 will include a continuation of infrastructural projects from 2016. It would include institutional reforms to better prepare the civil service for optimal service delivery.
“…We will revamp the working environment of public officers, emphasise training and seek to improve the incentive structure. Specifically, the secretariat buildings will be renovated and government offices will be relocated on the secretariat axis.
“We would also build a new central administrative building in Government House. We are convinced a conducive work environment would help to revolutionise service delivery to the people and increase returns due to government.
“To achieve our promise of a minimum of 200,000 jobs within four years, our job creation strategy, through a series of outlined programmes, includes partnering private identified private sector investors to recruit and offer training to out-growers and anchor farmers in specific crops where we have secured off-takers.
“In this budget, we are paying greater attention to Law, Order and Security, through more allocation to the Judiciary and implementing an Edo State security plan, which will involve community policing.
“For us to grow our state economy, we shall engage our people more and explore ways to assist in making them more productive, for herein lies our prosperity. We shall, therefore, take steps to improve the ease of doing business in Edo State but drastically reduce the bottlenecks experienced by business people.”