… Education gets highest attention
Maintenance of failed portions of roads, Construction of Coastal Roads to Lekki-Lagos, are parts of the key projects to be implemented under infrastructural development sector of the 2020 appropriation law of Ondo state.
Education, therefore, gets higher percentage with N35.931billion under the sub-sector breakdown of the total N187.859billion 2020 budget, tagged ‘Budget of Growth’, followed by Infrastructural development, N32.907billion.
Analysing the 2020 approved budget to journalists in Akure the Ondo state Capital, today, the Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Pastor Emmanuel Igbasan stated that the budget was designed to leapfrog the state’s economy in all sectors, and to further deliver the dividends of democracy to the people.
According to him, the 2020 budget has a provision of N80.470billion for Capital Project, N82.700billion for Recurrent Expenditure, N10.508billion for Debt Repayment, and N14.180billion for Statutory Transfer.
He gave the Sectoral breakdown of the bugdet to include, Economic, (N84.39billion), Social, (N60.877bn), Law& Justice, (N5.772bn), Regional (N5.359bn), and Administration, (N30.911bn).
The approved Minimum wage was captured under Salary and Wages of the Recurrent expenditure, with the estimate of N40billion earmarked for salary and wages, higher than 2019 which was N36.232billion.
The Economic Planning Commissioner highlighted key projects to be given adequate attention under for the 2020 fiscal year in tandem with the focus of the current administration under the Blueprint to Progress document, (JMPPR).
The key projects include, Zero pothole through Public Work Department of the Ministry of Works, Reticulation of Owena Dam to serve about 1.2million people, Introduction of ICT in schools and rapid broadband penetration, Improved healthcare delivery system through free healthcare for pregnant mothers and children of age 0-5years, and persons living with disabilities; and Contributory Health Insurance Scheme.
Others are Construction of coastal roads from Araromi in Ilaje to Lekki, 500km rural roads to connect farmers to market, Clean Ondo Initiatives, Independent Power Plant to serve State Secretariat, GRA, and Oba-Ile axis of Akure; and various agricultural projects to affect about 500,000 farmers.
He revealed that the policy direction of the budget was largely informed by the outcome of his Ministry’s consultative meetings with political leaders, professionals, Civil Society Organisations, women and youth groups.
He affirmed that the state government gave utmost importance to the implementation of the 2020 budget, saying “no stone would be left unturned in ensuring that the details contained therein are adhered to and implemented to the later”.
Igbasan reiterated the commitment of the Akeredolu-led administration to ensure that Ondo state becomes the standard bearer of progress in Nigeria, while encouraging all and sundry to be creative in order to help increase the pace of industrialisation in the state.
“We will be unrelenting in our pursuit of a safer, viable and digital Ondo state. We shall hold all accountable and will aggressively ensure justice is meted out to offenders”, he assured.
The Commissioner, however, announced that an easy-to-read version, tagged ‘ Citizens Bugdet’ for common man man in both English and Yoruba has been produced, with copies available online and at the ministry.