By Olasunkanmi Akoni, Gbenga Akanmu & Monsur Olowoopejo
LAGOS State Governor Babatunde Fashola yesterday presented the stateâ€™s 2010 budget of N429.5 billion, tagged: â€œBudget of Consolidationâ€ before the State House of Assembly for consideration and approval.
The budget represents an increase of N24.596 billion over last year’s N405bn budget. This also represents an approximate increase of 5.7 per cent over that of last year.
Giving a breakdown of the proposal, Fashola said the budget has a recurrent expenditure of N178.82bn and a capital expenditure of N250.8bn.
He added that the projected revenue is N307bn, out of which N204bn would be generated from internally-generated revenue (IGR), while the money expected as federal allocation is N78bn.
The governor added that dedicated revenue estimate is N20bn while extra-ordinary revenue estimate is N5bn.
Fashola stated that the recurrent expenditure of N178.8 bn is made up of total personnel cost of N55 billion and total overhead cost of N123.7bn.
The detailed components of the overhead cost are broken down as follows: Overhead Cost, N67bn; Subventions, N18.9bn; Transfer to other funds, N50m; Public Debt Charge, N17.7bn and Dedicated Expenditure, N20 bn.
The Capital Expenditure ofÂ N250.8bn is broken down as Core Capital, N209bn; Capital Development, N22.8bn; Matching Grants, N5.021bn; Counterpart Funding, N5.25 bn and Special Expenditure, N8.5bn.
The governor explained that the sectoral demarcation of the 2010 budget had been aligned to the standardised format set by International Development Agencies such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF).
In the sectoral allocation of the budget, Economic Affairs is to take the highest share with N145bn; General Public Service, N105.6bn; Education, N60bn; Housing and Community Amenities, N36.9bn and Environmental protection, N28.7bn.
Others include Public Order Service, N10.6bn; Recreation, Culture and Religion, N9.4bn and Social Protection, N3.018bn.
The governor explained that embedded in the sectoral figures and the attendant percentages were certain distinct policy thrusts and initiatives, which must be clearly enunciated for a better appreciation of the budget.
Earlier in his address, Fashola took time to explain achievements of his administration which include; completion and handing over of a number of projects; transformation of public transportation and payment of N5 billion as pension arrears.
Others are creation of vocation jobs, food security and economic development improvement, upgrading of safety standard across sectors in the state among others.
He said no project or programme would be abandoned by the current administration, adding that there would be emphasis on the maintenance of public order and safety.
His words: â€œWhile a lot of work has been done in our attempt to bridge the infrastructure gap and a lot of projects, too numerous to mention will be completed before the end of this year and in the first and subsequent quarters of next year.
â€œWe are already reaping in this budget, the benefit of our previous massive investment in key agencies and sectors. Our sustained investment in agencies such as the Lagos State Waste Management Authority, Lagos State Water Corporation and others have enhanced their capacity to run on their own strength, therefore, actually reducing overhead costs on these agencies in the 2010 budget.
â€œWe are also placing greater emphasis in the 2010 budget on improving the quality of life in our rural areas, particularly through Agriculture based micro-finance funding under the existing framework of the Lagos State Micro Finance Initiative.
â€œThe objective is to boost the rural economy, create rural-based employment and encourage more people to stay within their environment, which will enjoy greater local economic buoyancy.â€
Fashola said to realise the budget would take lots of hard work, a great deal of sacrifice and tremendous discipline, stressing that â€œwe will, in the shortest possible time, realise our manifest destiny and rank among the most stable, secure and prosperous mega cities on earth.â€
The governor, who expressed his administrationâ€™s optimism and confidence despite the current global economic recession stressed that Lagos was firmly on the path to becoming a major economic story, adding that the 2010 budget is a critical bridge to the attainment of the goal.
In his response, Speaker of the House, Adeyemi Ikuforiji, commended Governor Fashola for his administrationâ€™s achievements within the shortest period of assuming office, in spite of serious criticisms from detractors and opponents.
He particularly commended the administration for improvements in security, employment generation and infrastructural development in the state.
Ikuforiji used the occasion to dismiss the rumour making the round that the legislature and the executive were not in good terms over differences in ideology and decisions.
He described the rumour as the handiwork of detractors.
He said: â€œOn behalf of myself and the 39 members of the house, I promise you our utmost support for your administration in sustaining the state as a model and centre of excellence for other states.
â€œNo legislative house can boast of more cooperation and support to the legislature without any monetary inducement as Lagos State.â€