By Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has presented the 2021 budget estimate to the House of Assembly. It is christened the “Budget of Growth.”
Presenting the N290,295,465,423 Appropriation Bill on the floor of the assembly on Thursday, Governor Diri noted that the the outgoing year 2020 has been challenging due to the impact of COVID-19 and the ravages of flooding but expressed optimism that 2021 would be one of progress and prosperity for the state.
Giving a breakdown of part of the sectoral allocations, he said N34billion was earmarked for Works and Infrastructure while Education was allotted N24.9billion, Health N5billion, Agriculture N11.3billion, Trade and Investment N500million and Environment N3.3billion.
He also said that personnel cost would gulp N66,646,082,751 while capital expenditure would take N80,017,254,683 and overhead costs
The governor assured that his administration will at all times ensure the transparent management of financial resources while ensuring that the 2021 budget give Bayelsans good reasons to face the future with confidence.
Diri promised to ensure that every sector of the state economy is affected positively, saying the mandate given him and his team to serve will not be taken for granted.
He thanked the House of Assembly for its support and pledged to work closely with it in the interest of the state.
His words: ‘Mr. Speaker, this budget defines our focus and steps in the imminent financial year and our ambition to diversify the economy, prioritise education, empower our youths to embrace agriculture, industrialise our state and create jobs that will bring prosperity to all.
“My profound congratulations to the good people of Bayelsa State for your stamina, doggedness, sacrifices, patience and partnership that you have accorded to the government as we have made some difficult choices to get the state out of some very inclement terrains.
“If there is one thing I have learned since the start of this administration, it is that faith must stand trial and that examination precedes promotion. We present this prosperity budget 2021 with the conviction that God will grant us favour, understanding and supply all that we need to actualise prosperity.”
Speaker of the House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Abraham Ingobere, in his remarks, noted that the budget was achiveable and commended the governor’s desire to bring prosperity to Bayelsans.
He acknowledged the challenges caused by COVID-19 but expressed the hope that the coming year will be better.
He promised that the legislature would work with the executive to make life better for the people of the state.