Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State on Tuesday presented a N160.6 billion budget proposal to the state House of Assembly for the 2012 fiscal year.
Tagged ``Budget of Restoration'', the appropriation bill, representing an increase of 8.4 per cent over the 2011 budget, has N72.7 billion which represents 45.3 per cent as recurrent expenditure and N87.9 billion representing 54.7 per cent as capital expenditure.
The governor, at the ceremony witnessed by party leaders, traditional rulers, top government officials and other stakeholders, said the budget was a significant improvement over 76.4 per cent and 23.6 per cent of recurrent and capital expenditure respectively for 2011.
According to him, the 2012 revenue estimate of N110 billion is a decrease of 32.4 per cent compared with the N163 billion approved in the 2011 estimates, stressing that this was meant to truncate the culture of bloated, unrealistic and unrealizable revenue projections that had been the hallmark of the state's fiscal operations as noted earlier.
``Our analyses of budget performance in recent years have shown that the performance is low, this poor performance is acerbated by low spending on capital expenditure.
``No state that focuses on consumptive item can grow, which explains our undesirable state of affairs, which this administration inherited. If we want to break the vicious cycle of under-development, we have to take the bull by the horns to focus on capital expenditure that will be able to secure development that we are all craving for,'' he said.
Gov. Ajimobi further disclosed that his administration's strategy would be to increase the internally-generated revenue penetration by extending the tax net to those who were hitherto outside the net.
While stating that his government would soon request for legislative muscle from the Assembly on taxation and other sundry regulatory issues which were due for review, he also stressed the need to raise bond from the capital market, public-private sector participation (PPP) and other financing options to cover the financing of the N50.16 billion deficit.
The governor particularly said that the proposed bond issue would be used to finance specific flagship projects as well as some critical sectors, all of which would facilitate significant growth of the state's economy, adding that a large proportion of the beneficiary projects would be self-financing.
He highlighted the priority sectors to include economy (49 per cent); social services (20.9 per cent); general administration (16.66 per cent) and regional development (13.1 per cent), pointing out that the heavy percentage of 70.39 of the total budget allocated to the economic and social services sectors underscored his administration's determination to pursue a people-centered, employment-driven economic agenda.
In her remarks, the Speaker of the Assembly, Mrs. Monsurat Sunmonu, lauded the restoration agenda of the Ajimobi administration, pledging that the lawmakers would provide all necessary legal framework to ensure the successful execution of the programmes.
Although Sen. Ajimobi said that the outgoing year posed several challenges to his administration, he, however, added that it had provided a rallying point for purposeful partnership among the executive, legislature and the people of the state.
``We will support Your Excellency to fast-track the reposition of this state for maximum positive impact on our people,'' she assured, urging the executive arm to address the power problem by going into public-private partnership arrangement in power generation.
Oyo Statae : Ajimobi presents N160.6b 2012 budget.