Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State yesterday signed the revised 2020 budget at the government house, Owerri. The total amount reviewed for spending now according to the governor is N108, 385,836,130.
The signing into law of the revised 2020 budget of “Rehabilitation, Reconstruction and Recovery” governor Uzodimma noted will herald a fresh page, with great promise, in the fiscal history of the State.
Governor Uzodimma added that the revised budget signals first conscious steps, as a government, to begin the implementation of his mantra of “shared prosperity” agenda through a well thought out fiscal roadmap that guarantees economic liberation the people.
Explaining the rationals behind the revised budget, the governor pointed out that the downward oil prices has made the original budget unsustainable.
Also, he said that revision of the National MTEF and Nigeria’s agreement with the World Bank to help fund the shortfalls arising from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic through its States Fiscal Transparency Accountability for Sustainability (SFTAS) programme.
The programme he explained will avail states certain grants, Up to $20 million per state, if they meet specified conditions, which includes but not limited to, preparing a credible COVID19 responsive budget.
According to Uzodimma “part of the SFTAS requirements for this revised budget’ is that COVID-19 related expenses must be at least 10% of the total budget. All these and more, the revised 2020 budget has captured.”
While breaking down the earlier approved budget and the revised , Uzodimma said Recurrent expenditure in the approved budget stood at N91, 509,058,587 while the revised recurrent expenditure in the revised budget is N63, 419,736,259.
The Approved 2020 capital expenditure was N106, 283,584,680 while the 2020 revised capital expenditure Budget he said is reviewed down wards to N44, 966,099,871.
Also as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, a provision of N6, 379,828,253 is made for its mitigation in the 2020 revised capital expenditure.
Expenditure for Economic Sector he said stood at N63, 576,043,808 while the Revised Capital Budget on the same sector is N20, 555,468,871 representing 67.7% reduction. Also a provision of N2, 186,094,528 is made for Covid 19 interventions in the Economic Sector of the revised Budget.
“On the whole, after a careful review of the 2020 approved budget and taking into consideration the fall in oil prices and its negative effect on the National economy, coupled with the Corona virus (COVID 19) pandemic which necessitated the downward review of the 2020 approved budget, the total 2020 revised budget now stands at N108, 385,836,130.” Uzodimma stated.