Orji Presents 2013 Budget Of N134b To Abia Lawmakers

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Gov. Theodore Orji of Abia on Tuesday presented the 2013 budget of N134.14 billion to the state House of Assembly for approval.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the budget has an increase of N4.188 billion representing 3.2 per cent over the 2012 budget of N129.96 billion.

The governor tagged the budget: “Budget of Hope”.

According to him, it has a recurrent expenditure of N67.82 billion and a capital expenditure of N 66.327billion, respectively.

A breakdown of the recurrent expenditure showed that personnel cost will gulp N24.386 billion as against 2012 figure of N23.881 billion.

The governor put the overhead costs of the budget at N30.94 billion against the N26.74 billion in the 2012 budget.

Giving a breakdown of the capital expenditure, Orji said that general administration got the highest allocation of N25.398 billion, economic sector, N21.086 billion, regional development, N11.353 billion and social services sector, N7.67 billion.

The state assembly received N8.20 billion as capital vote.

He added that the consolidated Revenue Fund Charge for 2013 was placed at N12.490 billion.

Orji said that the budget was crafted and packaged to focus on the national economic situation.

“This is informed by our determination to positively position this state on a better platform of economic recovery and sustainable development.

?“We will ensure steady and unhindered progress of the state by focusing on the critical sectors of investment in physical infrastructure, better health care delivery, Education, and improving socio-economic services,’’ he said.

He added that the budget was a conscious arrangement for a paradigm shift to capital project development.

The shift, he added, was to address the critical issues in the Vision 20:20:20 and other development blue prints of the state.

He said that the state budget would continue to focus on projects that directly impact positively on the people.

“My administration has adopted the strategy of direct bank lodgment of electronic collection system, through the banks, to capture and confirm all payments made to the state.

“To improve our internally generated revenue, we have also resolved to widen the revenue base, this will enable us to reduce our dependence on statutory allocation from Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC),’’ he added.

He explained that government was expected to earn N60 billion from FAAC, N5 billion from VAT and N10 billion from the derivation fund.

Responding, the Speaker of the house, Mr Ude Okochukwu, commended the governor for early presentation of the budget, noting that lawmakers would meticulously look at it.

Okochukwu said that the lawmakers were happy with the numerous landmark projects being handled by the state government.

He promised that the legislators would add more impetus to the budget through their oversight function to ensure that the people received maximum gains from government efforts.

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