Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Hon. Solomon B. Elisha addressing the press on why the state’s 2020 Budget was reviewed.
As a way of responding to the Coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria, the Taraba state government has trimmed down its 2020 budget from N215,923, 576,810.00 to N176, 616, 318, 475.000.
This was disclosed by the Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Hon. Solomon B. Elisha while briefing media practitioners on the current details of the 2020 budget, said 12.60% of the total revised expenditure has been dedicated to the fight against COVID-19, stating that “the COVID-19 response has taken 12.60% of the total export of the revised budget size and it cuts across the sectors bordering on crisis, recovery, mitigation, livelihood and palliative.”
The Commissioner revealed that the downward review was necessitated by the prevailing situation heralded by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Citing the sharp decrease in the amounts accrued to the state in the first quarter of 2020, Hon. Elisha said, “the state has no reason to go beyond the projection of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and the Federal Government has the power to generate and share from this source.”
To however ensure that the revised budget sees the light of the day, the state government, as made known by him, has obtained permission through the legislature to access loans from commercial banks.
According to him, agreements have been signed with some of these creditors and an Irrevocable Standing Payment Order (ISPO) with Access Bank which are already in operation to fund some of the capital projects.”
Honourable Elisha said that the state government has made commitment of funders to some World Bank Assisted Projects and other funds as matching grants, stating that other commitments have also been with external partners to supply farm inputs.
In the area of water supply, the African Development Bank (AfDB) as revealed by the commissioner has since been engaged in the provision of potable water in some urban centres of the state.
The commissioner who also disclosed that the revised budget received the blessings of the entire members of the State House of Assembly, and that due process was duly followed to the end said that Governor Ishaku has assented to the reviewed budget.
He said that the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) which was earlier pegged at over N6 billion for the fiscal year in question was not altered despite the adverse effect of the pandemic and the reason tied to the apron string of back-logs of revenue arrears to be collected especially the federal government’s IPPS with over N4 billion out of which more than half have already been recovered.
The Taraba State House of Assembly on Tuesday passed the State 2020 budget estimate of N215.6bn into law.
Taraba Governor, Darius Ishaku had on December 19, 2019 presented a budget estimate of N213.6bn to the House for consideration and passage. But the House during, its budget consideration jacked up the budget up by N2bn, bringing the budget to N215.6bn.
Speaking to journalists after the passage, the Speaker Hon. Joseph Albasu-Kunini commended members for the timely passage of the budget.
According to him, the increase of N2bn in the budget was based the new Value Added Tax (VAT) from 5 to 7.5 percent. Kunini said the N2bn was allocated to new ministries created by the State government after the budget estimate was presented to the House.
He explained that the passage of the bill before the January 31st was good for the development of the State as it meet the deadline of the world bank for their services to Taraba State.
Our correspondent reports that the budget has over N71.5bn representing 33.5 percent as recurrent expenditure and over N142.6bn representing 66.5 percent as capital expenditure
Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku on Thursday presented the 2020 budget estimates of N213.63billion which he tagged “Budget of Accelerated Growth and Development” to the Taraba State House of Assembly for consideration.
Presenting the budget at the Taraba State House of Assembly Complex in the state capital, Jalingo the Governor said the budget estimates was to consolidate on his progress in the past years.
Governor Ishaku while presenting the budget expressed gratitude to the legislators for their continued support and urged them to consider and pass the budget speedily in other for him to be able to deliver the intent of the budget to Tarabans.
The governor on his part promised to always exercise his constitutional role in making sure the functions of the legislators are carried out as expected.
The Speaker, Taraba state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Dr. Albasu Joseph Kunini appreciated the Governor for coming to present the 2020 budget within the constitutionally given time.
Rt. Hon. Alkinjo assured the Governor that the house will give the budget the desired attention, speedy deliberation, consideration, and passage.
He told the Governor that the house is ever ready to give him all the support he needs to enable him to achieve the desired goals he has set for the good of Tarabans.
The budget of Two hundred and thirteen billion, six hundred and thirty two million, seventy six thousand, eight hundred and ten nairn, zero kobo (N213,632,076,810.00) was proposed with Works, Education and Health as top priorities.