The Kaduna State governor, Mal. Nasir el-Rufai yesterday presented a budget proposal of N215.9 billion for the 2017 fiscal year to the state House of Assembly.
el-Rufai said N130.3 billion, representing 60 per cent of the budget, was for capital expenditure, while N85.5 billion representing 40 per cent of the estimate, was for recurrent expenditure.
He said the opening balance for the 2017 budget stood at N15.8 billion, while N15.2 billion would be realised from Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and N34.9 billion from statutory allocation.
The governor said N9.4 billion would be generated from Value Added Tax and N6.6 billion from internal loans and credit and N55.9 billion loan from external sources.
el-Rufa’i told the lawmakers that the government expected to generate N35.3 billion as internal grants and another N7.1 billion grant from external sources.
The governor explained that the budget would largely focus on completing Zaria Water Project, massive rebuilding and equipping of schools, as well as rehabilitation, maintainance and rebuilding of township roads.
He said the government would also commence the first phase of Kaduna Light Rail project to link Rigachikun with Refinery, and provide infrastructure in mining sites and rural areas.
He added that the administration would during the year, create “a green economic zone – an Agro-Industrial Park along Abuja road”.
On agriculture, the governor said the focus would be on the expansion of post-harvest price support for farmers and the Anchor Borrowers Programme which targets six crops the state has comparative advantage. The governor added that in 2017, the administration would convert the Doka Hospital located on Kaduna-Abuja Expressway into a Trauma Centre and implement an Emergency Nutrition Intervention Programme to reduce malnutrition and hunger.
“We presented the draft estimates for discussion through consultations with the private sector, civil society and, finally to the general public, at a town hall meeting.
“The outcome of these consultations convinced us that we had to be even bolder in proposing an expansionary budget in these difficult economic times.
“We are convinced that the pursuit of economic recovery is a pressing mandate,” he said.
Receiving the budget, the Speaker, Aminu Shagali, said the House would fast track the passage of the document, adding that the House will attend to the proposed 2017 budget in line with all legislative procedures and consultations where necessary.
He commended the state government for initiating laudable policies that would move the state forward.