Awka- Anambra State Government has reduced its 2020 budget by about 16 percent.
State Commissioner for Economic Planning, Budget and Development Partners, Mr Mark Okoye announced the Budget was revised from N137.1 billion down to N112.8 billion, representing a reduction of about N24.3 billion.
The revised total revenue, the commissioner said, would represent a drop of 29 per cent from the projected N158.6 billion to N112.8 billion outlining factors that necessitated the review to include a fall in crude oil prices.
The virtual session hosted by the Ministry of Economic Planning, had in attendance officials of the state budget team as well as representatives from Civil Society Organisations and Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.
A breakdown shows that recurrent expenditure will decline by 18.9 per cent from an initial N58.8 billion to N47.7 billion while total capital expenditure had been reduced by 16.9 per cent from N78.4 billion to N65.1 billion.
The review became necessary in view of the raving Coronavirus pandemic across country and the World.
However, the budgets of critical sectors like health, water and sanitation were left untouched to ensure that there would be a buffer to contain COVID-19 outbreaks and associated social distancing and economic fall-out according to Okoye.
Mr Okoye drew special attention to key underlying guidelines during the 2020 Budget revision, affirming that non-essential items in the budget have either been reduced or stripped from MDAs capital expenditure budget.
He stressed that the reductions on some non-essential approved budget lines was to position the state against post COVID-19 shocks on the back of declining government revenues and receipts.
Okoye emphasised that provisions had also been made to provide cash transfers and livelihood support to the poor and vulnerable households in light of current economic realities, increase food security and safe functioning of food supply chains for all residents of the state.
Earlier in a speech, Mr Chris Azor, member, civil society organisation commended the state government for organising the forum aimed at openness and inclusion.
He expressed his belief that the states had what it took to tackle challenges and remain sustainable.
Source: Anambra State Government