Enugu government, yesterday, engaged citizens on the proposal to revise the state’s 2020 budget and tailor it down to align with the current economic realities occasioned by the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).
Following the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government and all 36 states of the federation were mandated to revise their budgets, in line with the templates adopted by the National Executive Council, to be able to adapt to the current situation globally.
Speaking during the public presentation held at The Dome Event Centre, Enugu, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, represented by his deputy, Mrs. Cecilia Ezeilo, said the budget revision became imperative because of “the economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak, especially the drastic reduction in government earnings, arising from the sudden collapse of the global demand for price of crude oil.”
She said the public session with citizens of the state underscores the state government’s commitment to participatory democracy and transparency. She added that the exercise was also “in fulfillment of our obligations under the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007 and the conditions of the World Bank budget policy support partnership as well as our Open Government Partnership (OGP) obligations.
“The budget of the Enugu State Government is ‘the business’ of all the stakeholders and opinion leaders as well as all Ndi Enugu at home and in the Diaspora”, stressing that their brilliant and patriotic inputs and the faithfulness “made our 2019 budget to achieve a performance of 80%”.
She said this was in addition to Enugu’s current enviable rating as one of the six most economically viable states in Nigeria.
Earlier in his remark, the State Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Dr. David Ugwunta, disclosed that the state government had carried out similar exercise during the preparation of the 2020 budget, which he said, offered citizens the opportunity to make their inputs.