Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, yesterday, presented a budget proposal of N132.5b to the state House of Assembly for the 2021 fiscal year. The Guardian observed that 2021 budget estimate is higher than the 2020 revised appropriation bill of N108.8b with N23.7b.
Presenting the budget estimate to the lawmakers, Ortom said of the amount, N20b would be spent on health and food security due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the governor, the 2021 budget titled: “Budget of Resilience,” considered the need to strengthen the resilience of Benue people and the state in its efforts to recover from the global, national and sub-national economic crises caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
He explained that the economic sector has the highest share of N51.3b followed by the social sector with N44.5b, administrative sector got N33.8b, while law and justice sector has the lowest share of N2.8b.
“Recurrent expenditure stood at N90.8b, while N49.3b was earmarked for personnel cost, overhead cost got N41.4b while capital expenditure received N41.7b,” he added.
It would recalled that the House of Assembly had earlier passed the states Appropriation Bill of N190.8b for the 2020 fiscal year, which was reduced to N108.8b following the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic realities.
Speaker of the House, Titus Uba, while receiving the budget estimate, assured that the House would ensure speedy passage of the appropriation bill and appealed for cooperation of the members and the various ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to achieve target.
He, however, commended Governor Ortom for the early presentation of the 2021 budget estimate, noting that the move would allow ample time for preparations to mitigate any economic disruption.