Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has presented the year 2017 Budget Estimates tagged "Budget of Consolidation "to the State House of Assembly for ratification and approval.
Presenting the estimates, Governor Emmanuel said "the 2017 fiscal estimate takes into consideration the 5 Point agenda of his administration namely; job creation, poverty alleviation, wealth creation, economic and political inclusion and infrastructural consolidation and expansion to further transform the state to an industrialized entity".
In the estimates, a total budgetary out lay of 365.251 billion have been proposed. This is against the 423.000 billion budgeted for 2016 and is made up of recurrent expenditure 88.425 billion, capital expenditure 193.956 billion, consolidated revenue fund charges 82.872 billion while the projected recurrent revenue for year 2017 is estimated at 175.000 billion as against 284.666 billion earmarked for 2016.
Governor Emmanuel gave a breakdown of the estimate as follows; Internally generated Revenue (IGR) N27.684 billion, Statutory Allocation N15.000 billion, Derivation Fund N120.000 billion, Retained Revenue from Parastatals N2.316 billion, Value Added Tax (VAT) N10.000 billion.
The recurrent proposed expenditure stands at Personnel Costs N50.489 billion, Overhead Costs N37.936 billion, Consolidated Revenue Fund Charges N82.870 billion. Including pensions, gratuities and public debts.
The Capital receipts expenditure proposed for year 2017 is estimated at 193.956 billion as against 243 billion for 2016 while the sectoral allocation of the total estimated Capital Expenditure outlay of N193.956 billion for the year 2017 stands at 42.204 21.8 for Administration, Economy 128.021 66.0 , Law and Justice 2.978 1.5 , Regional 0.800 0.4 and Social 19.953.
Governor Emmanuel stated that the vision is anchored on the fact that Akwa Ibom State can and must be a better place for all Akwa Ibom people born and unborn. "This article of faith inspired our commitment to the Akwa Ibom project and desire to leave it better than we met it by providing an effective and efficient administration anchored on people-oriented goals. "
He said his administration preaches consolidation and continuity and therefore intends to make the welfare of the Akwa Ibom person the centerpiece of all developmental efforts and actions as a government.
"paramount in the heart of this administration is industrialization of the state. This particular ambition accounts to general policy direction within the period of the administration and we have committed ourselves to completing all viable abandoned projects and reviving ailing viable industries. "
The Governor emphasised that his administration is committed to leaving no uncompleted project "our objectives and effort may sound radical, that is so because we approach issues outside of the box of conventional wisdom. When the passion is right nothing shall be impossible. Industrialization will create employment opportunities for our teeming youths and lift people from dependency to self-sustenance." Governor Emmanuel stated.
Speaker of the State House of Assembly Hon Onofiok Luke assured the Governor that the budget would be critically looked into with a view to ironing out gray areas before passage in the best interest of the state.
A minute of silence was observed in honour of the casualties of the Reigners Bible Church tragedy.