Delta State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, Wednesday presented a budget estimate of N367, 095,083,451 billion for the 2019 fiscal year to the State House of Assembly.
The budget christened “Budget of Sustainable Growth” has infrastructural development and education on its priority list.
Okowa said N79.6 billion is earmarked for road infrastructure and N26.8 billion for education with an additional N2.5 billion for the purpose of meeting counterpart funding in the education sector in 2019.
According to him, other areas of priority under economy sector include job creation N1.1 billion; agriculture, N2.9 billion; sports development, N3.9 billion; water resources, N1.6 billion; and health, N8.6 billion.
The governor said N157 billion representing 42.79 per cent and capital expenditure stands for recurrent expenditures and N209.9 billion representing 57.21 per cent is for capital expenditures.
On sources of finance to fund the budget, Okowa said a total of N73.4 billion (20%) is expected to be sourced as Internally Generated Revenue, IGR while N217.8 billion (59.36%) is expected to come in as statutory allocation including mineral revenue derivation.
He said other sources to fund the budget include; Value Added Tax, VAT, N13 billion (3.56%) and other capital receipts, N62.7 billion representing (17.09%).
Giving a breakdown of the proposed recurrent expenditure, Okowa said N65.7 billion (41.8%) will be spent as personnel costs while overhead costs will claim N55.2 billion (35.2%), adding that a total of N36.1 billion (23%) as consolidated revenue fund charges and social benefits.
Speaking on the performance of the 2018 budget of N308 billion, Okowa said from January to June this year, a total of N66.5 billion had been spent on recurrent items against the proportionate approved budget of N73.7 billion representing 90.04 per cent performance.
“we are poised to consolidate our successes and achievements and institutionalize the policies and practices that made them possible,”
“Despite the fluctuating fortunes of the economy in the last three and half years, I humbly note that our state has continued to forge ahead.”
Okowa explained that capital expenditure performance was 47.8%, which the state government spent N38.6 billion as against the proportionate budget figure of N80.8 billion.
He noted that the 2018 fiscal year witnessed a significant improvement in the state’s revenue receipts and expressed optimism for a more growth.
“Workers are paid regularly, thousands of previously unemployed youths are gainfully employed, and many of our people now enjoy better facilities in terms of roads, water, education and health.
“Agriculture has received a strong boost with many cluster farms springing up in different parts of the state, and even more importantly, our people remain committed to peace and harmonious living.
“Going forward, we shall build on this stable growth to position Delta State as a dynamic economy for the future. Indeed, a stronger Delta beckons”.