Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, on Monday, presented a budget proposal of N131.8 billion to the State House of Assembly for the 2021 fiscal year.
Ikpeazu, who tagged the appropriation bill “Budget of local contents and sustainable development,” said it was aimed at completing ongoing projects and programmes.
He said that a total projected budget outlay for 2021 fiscal year was N131,815,753,720, showing an increase of 22.12 per cent from 2020 Revised Budget.
According to the governor, a total of N62, 624,512,746, which is 47.51 per cent of the total expenditure will be spent on recurrent expenditure.
He said that N69,191,240,974, representing 52.49 per cent of the total budget would be spent on capital expenditure.
Ikpeazu said that the estimate was based on the crude oil price benchmark of $40 per barrel and exchange rate of N379 per dollar.
Giving a further breakdown, the governor said that the consolidated revenue fund charges were N15.1 billion, while N31.1 billion would go to personnel cost, whereas N16.2 billion would represent overhead cost.
He said that N9.5 billion would be expended on administrative sector; N40.7 billion for economic sector; N407.1 million for law and justice sector and N18.4 billion for social sector.
In reviewing the 2020 fiscal year, the governor noted that it started with some subdued optimism due to “negative surprises in economic activities” intensified by the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.
He said that aggregate revenue of N67.2 billion was projected from FAAC and N40.4 billion from the Internally Generated Revenue to fund the total budget of N137.4 billion for 2020.
Ikpeazu said that 2020 budget witnessed a deficit of N29.6 billion to be financed mainly by domestic loans.
According to the governor, the 2021 budget was prepared amidst a challenging global and domestic environment.
He urged the 7th Assembly to pass the Bill into law early enough to enable implementation to commence by January 1, 2021.
Ikpeazu said that it would help to sustain the restoration of a predictable Jan-Dec. fiscal year cycle in the state.
Receiving the budget proposal, Speaker of the Assembly, Chinedum Orji commended the governor for his efforts and his dedication to harmonious working relationship with the House.
He assured the governor that the Assembly would expeditiously work on the budget to ensure a seamless January -December fiscal year.