Enugu state Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi on Thursday, presented the 2023 budget proposal of N166.624,16,770 billion, tagged “Budget of Consolidation and Transformation” to Enugu State House of Assembly for consideration and speedy approval.
Presenting the budget proposal on the floor of the Hallow Chambers of the Enugu state House of Assembly, Governor Ugwuanyi disclosed that the budget is 10.73% lower than the 2022 budget because the target in 2023 is to conclude all on-going projects and consolidate on the achievements in the past seven and half years.”
He described the budget as his last budget presentation to the Enugu State House of Assembly, and a relay budget that would be implemented by two different administrations in the state as well as over-sighted by two different Assemblies of the state parliament.
Governor Ugwuanyi said that the budget estimate will run between January to May ,2023 He explained that it is intended to conclude ongoing projects as much as possible , consolidate his administration’s achievements in the past seven and half years, and transit the state into the capable hands of the next administration
The Governor said that out of the total budget size, the sum of N81.903,799,370.00 billion representing 49% of the total budget is for Recurrent Expenditure while the sum of N84.698,617,400.00 billion is for Capital Expenditure, representing 51% of the budget size.
Governor Ugwuanyi explained that the 2023 budget is guided by the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) 2023-2025 and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) and anchored on the National Macroeconomic assumptions, namely; National Inflation Rate of 17.16 percent, National Real GDP Growth of 3.75 percent, Oil Production Benchmark of 1.69 million barrels per day, Oil Price Benchmark of $70 per barrel, and Exchange Rate of N435.57 per US Dollar.
According to him, the key deliverables of the 2023 Budget include provision of security for life and property; construction, reconstruction and rehabilitation of urban roads; opening up of several rural areas through the construction of rural and earth roads as well as bridges to link up communities for movement of persons, agricultural products, goods and services; rehabilitation of Oji Water Scheme and other water facilities under the French Development Agency (AFD) support for the 3rd National Urban Water Sector Reform Project to upgrade water supply to Enugu Metropolis; construction, reconstruction and furnishing of classrooms for teaching and learning in basic education and provision of infrastructural facilities, science and hospital equipment for teaching and learning in the State University of Science and Applied Medical Sciences, SUMAS, Igbo-Eno.
Other key intents of his administration in the 2023 budget are infrastructural investments in the Judiciary to enhance the judicial environment for the dispensation of justice; expansion of the gains recorded in the Agro Processing Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS) Project in the pursuit of food security in the state; provision of agricultural inputs, assets, and wet market infrastructure for food production and enhanced food processing; completion, furnishing, equipping and operationalisation of newly built healthcare facilities including the State Infectious Disease Hospital, Amenity building at Enugu-Ezike General Hospital, Ogrute, additional Type 3 Primary Healthcare Centres in Uzo-Uwani, Awgu and Aninri LGAs, Cottage hospitals with isolation wings etc for enhanced healthcare delivery; sustainable municipal waste management; upgrade of power installations and extension of power to rural communities of the state, among others.
The Governor said the 2023 budget was tagged relay budget because this is the last budget he will present as Executive governor of Enugu state.
He said “I thank the almighty God for giving us the opportunity to serve Enugu State in my best interest as have been fair to all citizens of the state.
Governor Ugwuanyi appreciated the support accorded his administration in the last 7 years saying “it’s a great experience working with Enugu house of assembly members,”
He assured his administration’s commitment to continue to provide developmental projects in the state saying “as we elect a new governor in 2023, it is our wish that the incoming government will consolidate on our achievements,” he said.
The Governor had earlier reviewed past budgets since he assumed office 7years and seven months ago. from 2015 till date.He said the state faced economic challenges, brought about by recession, COVID-19 and #EndSARS.
He highlighted the notable achievements of his administration as establishment of the State University of Medical and Applied Sciences (SUMAS) Igbo-Eno, Enugu State with facilities put in place in readiness for the take-off of academic activities in the medical university; cumulative construction and reconstruction of about 1,000 classroom blocks, 11 water boreholes, provision of 68,875 sets of plastic locker/chair, among other educational facilities; sustained funding of foreign and local scholarships in favour of indigenes of the state such as the 22 students currently studying medical and information technology courses in University of Mewar, India, 200 students in different higher institutions of learning and 42 students at various secondary schools within the country; and secure of fully funded postgraduate scholarships for 40 Enugu State students to study in various parts of Europe, America, Australia and Asia through the Mentorship Masterclass of Enugu State Scholarship Scheme and Loans Board, valued at over three billion naira (N3,000,000,000.00) in addition to the one million naira each provided to the 40 students by Governor Ugwuanyi’s administration.
He stated that “efforts are underway to open up several rural areas through the construction of rural and earth roads to link up communities amongst others.”
On improvement in water resources, Governor Ugwuanyi said that the 9th Mile Crash Borehole programme rehabilitation works have been completed and electricity power supplied (solar power), adding that the “Crash Programme produces over 10,000,000litres (10,000 cubic meters) of water per day into our daily water supply to Enugu metropolis.”
He stated that his administration procured and installed new pumps at Oji Water Scheme that has resulted in the production of 30,000,000litres (30,000cubic meters) of water per day to Enugu Metropolis, adding that a contractor has been selected for the complete rehabilitation of Oji Water Scheme under the French Development Agency (AFD) support for the Third National Urban Water Sector Reform Project (3rd NUWSRP).
“The AFD re-organisation programme for the water sector of Enugu State under the Institutional and Organizational Technical Assistance (ITA & OTA) programmes including the Change Management Programme For The Water Corporation has commenced,” he said, revealing further that the completion of the rehabilitation of boreholes at Nsukka has increased water supply by over 10,000,000litres (10,000 cubic metres) of water daily.
On security, Governor Ugwuanyi said that the Nigerian Army 82 Division Headquarters has set up a Military Base at Eha Amufu, Isi-Uzo LGA and Akpawfu, Nkanu East LGA, stating that the state government has deployed 20 high-performance motorcycles for use by the military to beef up internal security duties in Nkanu East, Nkanu West, Enugu South and Isi-Uzo LGAs.among others
The governor disclosed that the provision of facilities at the Mopol 79 Squadron Ekwegbe, Igbo-Etiti LGA newly constructed by his administration has reached an advanced stage of completion, maintaining that “we have continued to provide modern communication equipment and required logistics for the maintenance of vehicles for the efficient functioning of the Nigerian Police, Enugu State Command and other security agencies.”
Speaking further on the 2022 budget achievements, Governor Ugwuanyi highlighted the laudable feats recorded in the areas of Judiciary, Agriculture, Enugu State Care Programme, Emergency Management, Tech Hubs and Youth Innovation Centres, Zik Centre, and his administration’s most consequential achievement, which is the listing of Enugu among the oil producing states in the country by the Federal Government through the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission.
He explained that “the economic import of this development (oil producing status) is that Enugu State becomes entitled to an equitable share of 13% of oil revenue under the 13% derivation principle as enshrined in section 162, sub-section 2 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended. The huge economic benefits will soon kick in and is simply a game changer.”
“Mr. Speaker, we were able to record these modest achievements, and others not mentioned, in all facets of the state despite the surging inflation, unfavourable exchange rate, general insecurity in the country, incessant disruption of economic activities due to the indiscriminate sit-at-home orders in the South-East region occasioned by separatist agitations, the recent devastating flooding with its attendant destruction of farms, properties, loss of lives and livelihoods which left pain and misery in its wake. Regardless, we have continued to maintain a convivial atmosphere essential for progress.
“As we round off our 2nd and last Term in office by May 2023, it is our hope that the coming year will offer a healthier environment that allows us to consolidate our dear state on the part of progress and growth, advance and transit to the next administration. We are emboldened by our unshakable faith and trust in the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob and the awesome God of David,” he said
Speaking, the Speaker of Enugu State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Edward Ubosi, commended Governor Ugwuanyi for his administration’s efforts in providing developmental projects since he assumed office.
“We are happy working with your administration. I am happy as I am leaving this office because of our good working relationship. If you will come as a governor again, please consider me as a Speaker,” Ubosi said