Akwa Ibom proposes N426 billion for 2016

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Akwa Ibom proposes N426 billion for 2016

 By; Patrick Titus, Uyo.

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel has proposed a budget of N426 billion for 2016 fiscal year against N484 billion in 2015 and is the first in last 16 years of current democracy that the state’s annual budget has dropped below the preceding year.

Governor Emmanuel while presenting the budget to the State House of Assembly for ratification said the short fall was due to current global economic realities.

He christened it, “Budget of sustainable development” in the major economic sectors of the state predicated on the oil bench mark of $30 per barrel at a production rate of $2.0 million barrel per day.

The breakdown of the budget showed recurrent expenditure of N92.964 billion, capital expenditure N245 billion while consolidated revenue fund charges is N88.036 billion.

Further breakdown indicated that current revenue is estimated at N284.665 billion made up of internally generated revenue (IGR) N35.273 billion, statutory allocation – N35 billion, derivation fund – N200.000 billion, retained revenue from parastatals – N2.392 billion while value added tax (VAT) is N12 billion.

The Governor explained that the policy thrust and objectives of the budget are directed at 12 major points which include the consolidation of the transformation so far achieved and setting new measures for further action that will surpass the performance outlined in the state medium term plan document tagged AK – VISION 2020.

Actualization of the economic power base of the state through industrialization and sustainable public-private sector initiative that will open up opportunities for growth and improved living standard of the citizenry.

Another is the creation and maintenance of enabling environment where the tenets of democratic governance shall thrive and dividends of democracy dispensed for the betterment of all.

Ensuring the security of lives and property of the people at all times, while adhering to the principle of the rule of law, thereby ensuring equity, justice and fair play.

In implementing the budget to realize the dream, Governor Emmanuel said that his administration would build a strong fiscal regime through the expansion of the state revenue base and the elimination of wastages and leakages in the expenditure profile.

Government would also build on the foundation so far laid and consolidate on the grains of the world class infrastructural development by employing effective public private partnership synergy.

Increase the viability of the state maritime sector, airport facilities and expansion of the road infrastructure, re-invigorate agriculture and agro-allied industries by making the sector appealing and responsive to natural requirements.

Sustain women and youth empowerment through capacity building and elimination of gender discrimination practices against women and enforcing the Child’s Right law; develop tourism potentials in the state order to boost revenue base and enhance employment opportunities.

The Governor also added that he would make the security network more proactive in order to guarantee security and encourage investments, just as he said he would make the public service more efficient and effective to meet the challenges of good governance.

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