ASABA/Nigeria: Delta State Government said project abandonment will not be entertained in the state.
The Commissioner for Economic Planning, Dr Kingsley Emu stated this yesterday during the State Budget defense for 2019 fiscal year in Asaba
Dr Emu said that the state governor’s focus over the years, was to ensure that no abandoned projects was left behind during it administration.
According to him, “It is customary to have a budget defense session as part of budgeting; it is not a ritual but a need. We started quarterly collation of performances since April to look at where we are. It was the beginning of data collection to know where we are in capital expenditure.”
“We had an expanded session in July 12, 2018, where the template which contained the details of the proposed budget was distributed to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) he said, adding, “It was to ensure that all projects from the inception of this administration which still has 25% payment outstanding are fully captured in the 2019 proposed budget.”
He revealed that the 2019 proposed budget was about N363.5 billion having N202 billion as capital expenditure and N160.5 billion for recurrent expenditure, saying that about 60% of the budget provision was for old and existing debt.
Dr Emu said that the major projects such as the new secretariat under construction, the storm water drainage and the Airport which has a life span of one year must come into the 2019 budget, under special arrangement.
“The governor has the prerogative to intervene in major projects across the state and he has his vote for that” Dr Emu said, even as he added that this year’s budget defense was different from the one before with an improvement.
The Economic planning Commissioner however stated that over the last three and half years, the state government had started the process of addressing some of the items on the legacy debt.
He said that it was to ensure that the state paid for what it could afford as some of the items on the legacy debt might not fit into the state’s need, saying that the state could not accommodate them in the budget considering the its lean purse.
He stated that the 2019 proposed budget defense started with some MDAs, the Office of the Secretary to the State Government and the Deputy Governor’s Office.