Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State yesterday presented a budget proposal of N367,095,083,451.00 for the 2019 fiscal year to the House of Assembly for consideration.
The 2019 budget size shows an increase of N59 billion on the 2018 budget of N308 billion.
Christened ‘Budget of Sustainable Growth’, the 2019 budget estimates consists of recurrent expenditure of N157 billion, representing 42.79 percent, and capital expenditure of N209.9 billion, representing 57.21percent.
Briefing the House during plenary presided over by the Speaker, Sheriff Oborevwori, Okowa said road development and education top the priority list of the government for the 2019 fiscal year.
The governor earmarked N79.6 billion for road infrastructure and N26.8 billion for education with an additional N2.5 billion for counterpart funding in the education sector in 2019. Other areas of priority under economy sector include job creation, N1.1 billion; agriculture, N2.9 billion; sports development, N3.9 billion; water resources, N1.6 billion and health, N8.6 billion.
To finance the budget, Okowa said N73.4 billion (20 percent) is expected to be sourced as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), while N217.8 billion (59.36 percent) is expected to come in as statutory allocation, including mineral revenue derivation.
Other sources of funding, according to him, include Value Added Tax (VAT), N13 billion (3.56 percent) and other capital receipts, N62.7 billion representing (17.09 percent).
Giving a breakdown of the proposed recurrent expenditure, Okowa said N65.7 billion (41.8 percent) will be spent as personnel costs while overhead costs will gulp N55.2 billion (35.2 percent), just as he proposed N36.1 billion (23 percent) as consolidated revenue fund charges and social benefits.
On the performance of the 2018 budget, Okowa said from January to June this year, N66.5 billion has been
spent on recurrent items against the proportionate approved budget of N73.7 billion, representing performance of 90.4 percent.