By; JULIANA KATUNG, Kaduna
Kaduna State Government is to spend over N55.991,240,959.84 in the 23 local government areas in the 2018 financial year.
The sum of N34.8 billion will be spent as recurrent which takes 62.24% of the budget while the sum of 21.1 billion dominates the capital expenditure which covers 37.7% of the total budget.
The 23 local government areas appeared before the state assembly committee on appropriation to defend their budgets for the year.
Chairman House Committee on Appropriation, Alhaji Ahmed Mohammed while speaking with newsmen shortly after the budget defence by the local government areas commended the conduct of the defence exercise.
“The exercise was conducted smoothly and the total estimates of N55,991,240,959.84 is being scrutinized by the members. I believe each and every item put in the budget will benefit the people of the local government areas and the entire state,” he said.
He assured the electorate that the lawmakers in the state are doing every thing possible to deliver dividends of democracy to the people and that all the proposed projects in the budget are geared towards ensuring that.
Also speaking, the Chairman, Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Alhaji Yahaya Sale who spoke with journalist shortly after defending the budget of Giwa Local council, said Kaduna state government proposed zero based budget which is a rolling budget year,
“We have no problem because we have sat down with most members at individual local government level, deliberated with them to locate grey areas and make corrections which is why the budget defence went on smoothly and all process were harmonized,” he said
He Added that efforts have been put on by the state in its bid to deliver dividends of democracy, one of which is the introduction of a community budget, “this is kind of budget which started in England and it aids towards looking inwards to locate the problems of the community and then check to see if the government can afford to tackle the problem located or not.
“If the government cannot afford to meet up with these new needs then, private organizations are called upon to come and make an investment with the hope of making the community enjoy what the government is unable to provide for them at a very mild profit that the community will not suffer and at an available and efficient condition,” he explained explained.
He urged organizations like NURTW, NUT, PTD and other organizations, to come and invest but instead of investing in building of hotels, they can invest in building of schools, hospitals, roads construction and giving the services to the people of the communities at a cheaper rate instead of going to general hospitals in the cities, stressing that this will decongest the hospitals in the cities.
Meanwhile, the 23 Local government areas sole administrators defended their budgets with Lere having the highest budget size of over three billion Naira ( 3,004,384,406.80) and Kudan got the lowest budget size of over one billion (1,587,289,746.66).