By Muhammad Bello
Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State on Monday presented the state’s 2019 budget estimates of N169.652billion to the State House of Assembly for consideration.
Tambuwal said that the sum of N99.184billion was for capital projects while the sum of N70.468billion was for recurrent expenditure.
He said that the 2019 budget which was tagged “Budget of Consolidation for Sustainable Growth and Development,’’ would focus on completion of projects started in 2018 and execution of new ones.
Tambuwal stated that 2019 would be the fourth year of his administration, thereby stressing the need to consolidate on all the administration’s achievements.
‘‘This is to set such achievements into motion so as to improve the living standard of our people.
“For the fourth year running, the education sector got the highest allocation of over N47.4 billion, representing 27.9 per cent of the total estimates,’’ he added.
The governor explained that the policy thrust of the budget was to ensure sustainable economic development through substantial investment in critical sectors.
He said that the sectors included education, agriculture, healthcare delivery, exploration of mineral resources, investment in renewable energy and infrastructure.
“We will prioritise effective resources management and seek intervention in areas with high potentials to create job opportunities, generate income and improve revenue generation,” he said.
The governor gave the assurance that the government would continue to work to strengthen capacity building of scheduled ministries for better service delivery.
“We will continue to promote our partnership with the private sector in areas of strategic importance to our development objective.
“We will promote value chain through agro-processing and diversification by way of giving incentives to farmers and producers.
“We will also create backward and forward linkages between and among institutions, partners and other stakeholders to accelerate economic growth,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that allocations to other sectors in the budget proposal showed that the health sector got N21.9 billion and general administration had N21.1 billion.
The Speaker, Alhaji Salihu Maidaji, said that the lawmakers would ensure swift passage of the budget to maintain the frequency of development in the state.
Meanwhile, the Assembly has proceeded on a recess from Dec. 25 to Jan. 7, 2019 to mark the end of second quarter 4th session to enable members celebrate the Christmas and New Year.