Kwara State Governor, Dr Abdulfatah Ahmed, has presented a 2017 budget estimate of N135 billion to the State House of Assembly for consideration and approval.
The governor presented the appropriation bill tagged: Budget of Introspection and Sustenance to the House on Thursday.
He said the budget showed an increase of N23.7 billion representing 21.2 per cent over the 2016 revised budget.
According to Ahmed, N57.5 billion representing 42.5 per cent of the budget was earmarked for recurrent expenditure.
He also told the House that N71 billion representing 52.5 per cent of the budget went to capital expenditure, while N7billion representing 5 per cent of the total budget is for public debt service.
Under Sectoral allocation, Ahmed said that Economic Affairs took the lion share of N35.4 billion representing 26 per cent of the total budget, followed by Education with N30 billion representing 22 per cent of the total budget.
General Public Services came third with the sum of N26.5 billion presenting 20 per cent of the budget.
The Governor said the budget was anchored on current economic realities and determination to look inwards for sustained prosperity and development.
We have therefore maintained a prudent approach to estimating revenues for the 2017 financial year in order to cushion the economy from possible fiscal shocks that may arise.
We maintained a zero based budgeting to arrive at our projections, he added.
According to him, the 2017 budget was based on oil price benchmark of $42.5 per barrel, oil production of 2.2 million barrels per day, average Exchange Rate of N1 to 305/$ and inflation Rate of 10.28% .
The Governor said the 2017 appropriation bill is expected to be financed through Federal Allocations to the state, Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and Value Added Tax (VAT).
Ahmed also said the budget would be funded through Capital Development Fund Receipt/Aid and Term Loan facility from Financial Institutions.
The Governor told the House that about N23.7 billion representing 17.6 percent of the budget would be sourced from Federation Account, while IGR would fetch N29.3 billion, representing 21.5 percent.
Gov Ahmed reassured the people of the state of the commitment of his administration to implement result oriented policies and programmes that will boost economic activities, unlock growth and create jobs in the 2017 financial year.
All on-going capital projects under the General Public Service Sector will be accorded the highest priority to ensure their completion in 2017 financial year.
The State government will continue to accord high premium to the wellbeing of its workers in all ramifications, the governor said.
He stated that more qualified youths will be engaged to address staff shortage created by voluntary retirement and resignation in 2017.
Ahmed also said that attention will be given to provision of operational vehicles to all MDAs in the 2017 fiscal year.
Source: Nigerian Television Authority (NTA)