By Henry Odeh
The Oyo State House of Assembly has reviewed the 2020 appropriation budget downward from N213billion to N174billion.
The State lawmakers agreed there is a substantial justification for the review request made by the executive arm of government led by Governor Seyi Makinde.
Giving report at the Tuesday plenary, the Chairman committee on public accounts, finance and appropriation, Hon. Abdulakeem Mustapha representing Kajola State constituency noted that the paucity of funds occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic that has been rampaging the global economy, by extension Nigeria and Oyo State in particular, constitutes threat to really financing the initially Approved 2020 Budget hundred percent.
He said, “The streamlining of the budget size tends to achieve a realistic budgeting in the State which is one of the key advocacies of the finance and budget experts.
“The budget performance assessment of some key Ministries, Agencies and Departments from January to June, 2020 revealed 20-30 recurrent expenditure implementation while few have impressive Capital Expenditure performance such as Ministry of Health, Oyo State Investment and Public Private Partnership Agency.
“For the first time since establishment, Oyo State College of Nursing and Midwifery got full accreditation of all its courses, courtesy of Government support. Government ensure workers welfare was given priority to ameliorate the effect of COVID-19 Pandemic on the workforce, pension and gratuity of retirees were paid promptly to May,2013 and infrastructural development was not allowed to suffer unnecessary setback.”
According to the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Adebo Ogundoyin the downward review of the budget is to accommodate the latest financial reality of the nation and the State courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic which has led to drastic drop in oil price, national revenue and subsequently reduction in federal allocation to States and revenue generation in Oyo State.
Before the dwindling economy, Oyo State government budgeted N213.7 billion for the 2020 fiscal year, but now the Executive Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde has requested for review to N174billion.
He said, “We urged the Executive Arm of Government be urged through the Board of Internal Revenue and other revenue generating Ministries and Agencies of Government to key into automation of tax collection in the State to block revenue leakages.
“IGR remains the key driver of the State infrastructural development due to persistent drastic reduction in the State’s Statutory Allocation coupled with COVID-19 pandemic.”