Gov. Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State on Wednesday signed the revised 2020 Appropriation Bill of N99.6 billion into law.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Bagudu had earlier signed N138 billion Appropriation Bill for the 2020 fiscal year.
Bagudu said that the budget was reviewed down from N138 billion to N99.6 billion, with reduction of over N38 billion, to meet up with the economic realities of the state.
He said “The budget ammendment is like no other in the past occasioned by the global coronavirus pandemic that has affected countries in a very devastating manner as revenues drastically shrunk.
“The ammended budget have been from the input of the World Bank and Kebbi is one of the participating states in the Fiscal Transparency and Accountability framework of the bank.
“The World Bank offered to assist the states with additional financing of 750 million dollars to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. ”
Bagudu noted that one of the conditions for accessing the facility was the passage of an amended budget with input from the World Bank, adding that the appropriation bill must be signed and published on or before July 31.
“I am happy today; we have signed the budget as a result of the commendable efforts of the state House of Assembly, who made sacrifices to pass it in recorded time,” he said.
Bagudu also revealed that the state government had recorded modest stride in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He announced further that the contractors handling Illo – Banu Road and Rijau-Unashi Bridge projects had returned to the sites.
The governor revealed that about 12.5 kilogrammes bar of gold was collated by artisanal miners in the state, and expressed the hope the state would produced tones of gold by by the end of the year.
Bagudu added that the state government had signed agreement with a development organisation under the supervision of the Federal Ministries of Finance, Lands and Housing for the construction of 5,000 houses in state.
“Sequel to the signing of the agreement, we provided operational vehicles and all the support that we should provide,” he said, adding that the project would soon commenced.
While commending the legislators, World Bank and the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) for their contributions to the ammendment, Bagudu reiterated commitment to ensuring financial autonomy of the legislature.
Also speaking, the Speaker, Abdulmumeen Kamba, expressed delight over the development, noting that the proposed revised budget was transmitted to the house on July 14.
“Due to the situation on ground and cogent issues followed its review, we made it a duty to give it a speedy passage,” Kamba said. .
Benson Iziama edited
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