By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State has presented a budget of N166.9 billion for the 2018 fiscal year.
Mr Obiano, yesterday, presented the appropriation bill to the Anambra State House of Assembly and tagged it ‘Budget for Value for Money, Economic Diversification and Job Creation.’
He said it represents a 44 percent increase on the 2017 budget, stating that it comprises N63.9 billion for recurrent expenditure and N103.1 billion for capital expenditure.
The Governor said in the proposal, road construction and rehabilitation got the highest allocation of N27.93 billion followed by education with N9.5 billion.
“This budget is the first meaningful step towards consolidation of our previous performance to transform Anambra into a hub for business and investments as well as the poster-boy for inclusiveness and sustainable development in Nigeria.
“Our continued intervention in Roads and Bridges, which will always be a key strategic focus of my administration, is estimated at N27.93 billion of which Road construction and rehabilitation will gulp N25.7 billion, completing approximately 150km of roads across the State.
“In agriculture, we are aiming to sustain the current successes achieved in the last four years by implementing a two -pronged strategy of : facilitating private sector and export-driven large scale agro-allied investments; and empowerment of small scale farmers in the state, consequently alleviating poverty as well as creating jobs.
“To achieve this, we have developed the Community Agriculture Land Development Project where we expect to develop over 1,500 hectares of land across the three senatorial zones of the State.
“We shall augment this by allocating over N700 millio to the procurement of agro inputs, including seedlings and fertilizers, to support our farmers.
“To achieve this, we have allocated the sum of N3.8 billion to the Agricultural Sector,” the Governor told the lawmakers.
He said further that, “My administration shall ensure that Youth Empowerment is a Key Covenant between us and the people we govern in the 2018 Fiscal Year.
“Providing meaningful employment opportunities to our teeming youths is vital to ensuring the continued socio-economic growth of the state as well as sustaining the current security narrative in the State.
“The main driver in achieving this would be through the Youth Entrepreneurship & Empowerment Programme where we have allocated N5bn to empower up to 10,000 youths through vocational, agricultural and artisan training programmes as well as the provision of interest-free start-up capital to commence their businesses.”
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