Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi on Thursday presented a budget of N267bn which represents an increase of 28% on the 2017 budget.
The 2018 fiscal appropriation of the state is tagged Budget of Stabilization and it has a difference of N60bn from that of 2017 which had the figure of N207bn.
One of the highlights of the budget presentation was the cross-carpeting of a staunch member of the opposition party in the State House of Assembly, Hon. Joshua Oyebamiji, representing Akinyele State Constituency to the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).
The budget presentation witnessed the presence of eminent personalities in the state including former Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Ambassador Taofeek Arapaja, Former Senate Leader, Senator Teslim Folarin, Former Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Ashimiyu Alarape, traditional rulers , led by the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, Aseyin of Iseyin, Oba Salawudeen Adekunle Ajinese 1, Eleruwa of Eruwa, Oba Samuel Adegbola, the Olubadan in Council, Party stalwarts as well as members of the Ibadan Elders Forum led by Ambassador Olu Sanu.
Governor Ajimobi informed the members of the house that the budget submitted for consideration and approval of the legislature stood at N267,436,357,912.19, stressing that detailed facts behind the budget would be made known later by the State Ministry of Finance, Budget and Planning.
The governor explained that the proposed budget is expected to be funded from Internally Generated revenue of N112.10bn, Federation Account N93.68bn, Capital Receipts of N43.72bn, Transfer (LG, JAAC for LGSPB & LGSC) of N7.53bn and an unspent income of N10.40bn from 2017.
Senator Ajimobi said that the structure of the 2018 budgetary proposal reflects the priority the Government has accorded the various sectors in terms of their expected developmental effects, noting that the relative aggregate sectoral allocations were Economic Sector N85.390bn (57.29%), Social Services Sector N54.280bn (36.42%), Law & Justice Sector N0.517bn (0.35%) and General Administration Sector N8.860bn (5.94).
According to him, “The aggregate percentage of 93.71% of the capital expenditure allocated to the economic and social sub-sectors underscores the State Government’s determination to continue to pursue a people-centered, empowerment-focused agenda. We consider this as the best antidote to the problem of poverty amongst our people.
“It is to be recalled that apart from consistently utilizing more than the stipulated minimum of all the recurrent intervention from the federal government to settle salary/pension and arrears, our administration had conceded 100% monthly allocation from the federation accounts to payment of salaries and pensions of the State’s work force,” he added.
The Governor assured that his administration will further strengthen monitoring, supervision and inspection of our teaching staff as well as roll out policies that will culminate to better performance of students at national and international examinations, adding that the State Government has awarded the construction and renovation of structures in Schools towards the provision of conducive environment for teaching and learning in our various schools with continued restructuring exercise in respect of staff redistribution with emphasis on professionalism and competence.
Governor Ajimobi pointed out that elections into our Local Government Areas and the newly created Local Council Development Areas will hold in 2018, adding “this is intended to bring governance to the door steps of the people and to enhance development at the grassroots. Therefore, the content and structure of this proposal have captured our vision towards achieving this and the continuation of our developmental strides in the 2018 fiscal year.”
He hinted that necessary actions would be taken to further control hazards associated with sanitation and street trading as more neighborhood markets would be established to cut down on centralization of social facilities in the cities which always lead to urban crisis.
He listed areas where rehabilitation and expansion of water projects would be embarked upon in the coming year to include rehabilitation of Igboho water supply scheme at a cost of N474m, rehabilitation of Owode water supply scheme with N200m, expansion of Ogbomoso/Ikoyi-Ile water supply scheme and procurement of water treatment chemical, worth N500m.
In Agriculture, Governor Ajimobi said the State government would to procure sufficient mechanization equipment which could be adapted by youths to enhance mechanized farming in the State.
He said, “It gladdens me to register my sincere appreciation for the wonderful support that our administration has enjoyed from all segments of the State. These range from our highly revered traditional rulers to community, political, opinion leaders, professional and trade groups, market women, civil society and nongovernmental organizations as well as students across all educational levels.
“You have all demonstrated to us your readiness to contribute directly or indirectly to the State’s economic growth. On the other hand, I appeal to tax defaulters to perform their civic responsibilities and join hands with others to contribute to government efforts at advancing the development of the State with its attendant socio – economic benefits,” Governor Ajimobi added.
Receiving the 2018 budget proposal, the Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Michael Adeyemo promised to support the administration of Senator Abiola Ajimobi and work in harmony with the executive to see to the transformation and repositioning of the State.
He said “We appreciate the good efforts of the Ajimobi-led executive and promise to give prompt and adequate attention to the passage of the 2018 fiscal budget. It is our wish that members will keep up the good work that has transformed into the notable achievements of this administration and we promise to continue working in harmony with the executive to achieve greater yields of democratic dividends for our people.”