The Ondo State House of Assembly has promised a realistic and inclusive consideration of the revised 2020 budget proposal in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr Sunday Olajide, the Chairman, House Adhoc Committee on Finance and Appropriation, made the pledge during the committee’s meeting with some Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on Monday in Akure.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the state executive had submitted a revised 2020 budget proposal – from N187 billion to N151 billion – to the assembly for consideration.
Olajide said the review became important to enable the state sustain its economy, especially in the face of the coronavirus ravaging the world.
“There are a lot of expectations to be met and we will revisit and review the budget.
“We just have to review downward, some figures.
“In the proposal given to us, we are having a total reduction of over N30 billion because we are moving from N187 billion to N151 billion.
“We have looked at the MDAs figures, which they came to defend and the committee will later do its work and come up with realistic figures.
“We questioned some figures and we were able to address some issues in the course of our meeting,’’ the committee chairman said.
He explained that the review, virtually cut across all MDAs, but because of time, the committee called critical stakeholders in health, education, agriculture, works, finance and youth development.
“These are the areas where activities of the government directly or indirectly have effects on CIVID-19.’’
He said that the committee would submit its report to the plenary session of the assembly for passage in due time.
According to him, whatever is not captured in the year under review would be considered in 2021 budget.
He called for the cooperation of the concerned stakeholders in making the revised budget proposal a reality.
Olajide said that necessary attention would be given to the health sector in terms of budgetary allocation to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the state.
In his remarks, Mr Emmanuel Igbasan, the state Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, appealed to the committee to approach the budget review as a matter of necessity.
Similarly, Mr Wale Akinterinwa, the state Commissioner for Finance, said the revised budget proposal would enable the state to key into some intervention funds, which would be used for developmental projects.
Edited By: Chidi Opara/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)
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