Governor of Ondo State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, has stated.his administration will concentrate more on capital expenditure to abridge the huge infrastructural deficit in the State.
In the budget, capital expenditure for the 2018 fiscal year stands at N80.929 Billion which is 46% of the total Budget. It is the first time capital expenditure recorded an all time high in the state budget.
Akeredolu stated.his administration has taken a bold step to reduce the unfortunate situation of frittering all its earnings on recurrent expenditure.
He lamented the huge concentration of budgets on recurrent expenditure, adding that it is worrisome considering the state of development in the state.
Akeredolu stated.the decision was to ensure that governance was spread to the majority of the people who are not employed by the Government.
The governor spoke at the signing of the 2018 appropriation bill and two other bills at the cocoa conference hall at the governor’s office, Alagbaka Akure on Tuesday.
A total budget of N181.424 was signed into law by the governor who assured that the 2018 budget will advance the course of development in the state.
As stated by the governor, debt service will take an estimated sum of N13.600 Billion which is 7.5%. Statutory Transfers to OSOPADEC and Local Governments is N8.307 Billion which represents 4.6%.
“The sum of N78.588 Billion which represents 43.3% is set aside for recurrent expenditure. Put simply, this amount will be expended on salaries, allowances and grants. This is still very much on the high side considering the state of our development ” he stated.
Akeredolu who also signed the Contributory Health Insurance Scheme Bill, stated.the bill will ensure that every resident of Ondo State has access to good health care services.
He said ” the bill will ensure that all residents of Ondo State have financial protection, physical access to quality and affordable health care services
” It will also Protect families from the financial hardship posed by huge medical bills, Regulate the rise in the cost of health care services
“It will ensure that the poor and vulnerable shall be guaranteed the basic minimum package as defined under the National Health Act. ”
Akeredolu stated.the bill will bring equitable distribution of health care costs across different income groups and maintain high standard of health care delivery services within the Health Sector.
As stated by him, the bill will provide efficiency in health care service delivery and improve private sector participation in the provision of health care services among others.
The governor who also signed the Ondo State Social Protection Law, stated.his administration will not stop to make the well-being of the people the commanding principle upon which all activities are laid.
Akeredolu who noted that paucity of funds was a great challenge to the set objectives, assured that his administration was determined to improve fiscal circumstances through an aggressive regime of revenue mobilization and generation.
” We shall reward diligence not in abstract terms. Stiff and swift sanctions, however, await anyone, either a civil servant or political appointee, who may choose to test our Will
“We shall expand our tax base to capture virtually everybody in the state. We will not stop to educate our citizens on the significance of paying tax to the state. All those who own businesses must pay taxes commensurate to their concerns
“Every adult within the tax bracket must be ready to pay tax in one form or the other. This is the only way out of the current socio-economic problems confronting the State. “he stated.