The Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, has unveiled the proposed budget for the year 2024 with an estimated outlay of N258,278,501,339.00.

This budget surpasses the revised approved budget for 2023, which stood at N197,599,674,912.00 which represents a significant increase of N60,678,826,427.00, equivalent to a 30.71% rise.

During his address at the State House of Assembly Complex, Governor Bello emphasized the critical areas that will receive utmost priority in the 2024 budget. These areas include good governance and leadership, infrastructure development and maintenance, education and human capital development, improved healthcare and social welfare, agriculture and rural development, security and peace-building, women empowerment and gender equity, environment and sustainable development, industry and commerce, information and communication technology and innovation, youth empowerment and sports development, entertainment, culture, and tourism development, housing, enhanced internally generated revenue (IGR), and water and sanitation.

The Governor’s budget speech, which outlines the comprehensive plan for the state’s economic growth, is reproduced in its entirety below:

BEING TEXT OF THE 2024 BUDGET SPEECH PRESENTED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, GOVERNOR YAHAYA BELLO, CON, THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF KOGI STATE TO THE KOGI STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY ON FRIDAY, THE 8TH OF DECEMBER, 2023

Protocols

Mr. Speaker and Honourable Members of the Kogi State House of Assembly, I wish to start by appreciating the Almighty God for all He has done for us as a State over the last 8 years of this Administration. Despite the turbulent times which we have passed through and the very challenging circumstances which confronted leaders all over the world, Kogi State is still standing firm and making progress to the glory of God. We cannot thank God enough for His Mercies, Blessings and Protections upon our State and its people.

Mr. Speaker and Hon. Members, I stand in these Hallowed Chambers with a deep sense of humility, candour and satisfaction, knowing fully well that this draft Budget is the last I will be laying before this Honourable House as the Executive Governor of Kogi State. This is why I must now passionately and most sincerely too, salute this Honourable House for the honesty and willingness with which we have worked together in the service of our good people. We have cooperated, even when cooperation was difficult, because of the utmost priority which we have accorded the interests of our people, over and above any other consideration.

As Mr. Speaker and the Honourable Members can attest, we met a state that was comatose in 2016 and today we are coming closer to handing over to our successors a state that is measuring decently high on all growth and development indices. The quality of life of our people which we have worked so hard together to uplift these 8 years, has improved verifiably when benchmarked against the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the United Nations Multidimensional Poverty Index.

Our legacy footprints which looked wildly ambitious when we presented them in our New Direction Blueprint 8 years ago and other policy documents as the need arose are today physical realities standing all over our state for the use of our people. We have been able to translate them to tangible dividends of democracy for our people in diverse sectors, including Education, Health, Infrastructure and Utilities, Youth Empowerment and Gender Equity, Civil Service Reforms, Agriculture, Human Capital Development, Cooperation and Integration and most importantly, Security of lives and properties of everyone living in Kogi State or passing through our territory to other parts of the country.

Mr. Speaker and Honourable Members, I also want to deeply and humbly appreciate the good people of Kogi State. Their unflinching loyalty and overwhelming support led to our landslide victory at the 2023 Kogi State Governorship Elections on November 11. Mr. Speaker, it was most gratifying to see communities come together to overwhelmingly vote for us while chanting our projects as their reason, just like we saw in that viral video from one Polling Unit in Kogi West. I assure us that even as a sitting Governor, it was the best thing ever, such a glorious feeling, to see our people recognize our good work so openly and reward us for it in a way that really counts.

This victory of the APC is a victory for all Kogites, far and near. Itt is a victory for a knowledgeable people who ignored all sorts of unprogressive agenda to vote for the Continuity and Consolidation of transformational leadership and good governance in Kogi State. I assure our people that the in-coming Administration of His Excellency, Governor-Elect, Ahmed Usman Ododo and his Deputy, Comrade Joel Oyibo will hit the ground running. They are the beneficiaries of the solid foundation that our administration has laid in all sectors during our two terms, and they are fully mentored and equipped to respond to the day-to-day yearnings and aspirations of our people and to deliver for us all, and without discrimination, a State that works for everyone.

Mr. Speaker, our Budgeting process has remained progressively participatory and inclusive since 2016 when we assumed office. This is due to the far-reaching reforms undertaken by our Administration which has given the benefit of eliciting inputs from our people into the Budget through the town hall stakeholders’ engagements. This institutionalized initiative has, no doubt, improved the credibility of our Budget.

Let me also add, Mr. Speaker and Hon. Members, that, on the account of our improved budgeting process, our administration received several accolades, awards and grants from our Development Partners including the World Bank, which availed us some additional resources for the service of our people. Today, as in the last 6 years, the State budgeting processes starting from the Call Circular to the approved Budget have been made publicly available on the State official website at www.kogistate.gov.ng and e-Compendium at www.kogipedia.net. I urge our people from far and near to be part of governance by regularly visiting these websites and making valuable contributions that leadership can leverage to further improve stewardship.

Mr. Speaker, the world in which we live in has been rattled by several excruciating happenings, in the last three years or thereabout. The first being the self-inflicted COVID-19 question, when the world needlessly succumbed to the antics of speculations and locked itself down. The consequences of this have been the heavy prize that we have continued to pay due to the bad choices that were made at the time. Others include the effect of the Russia-Ukraine War, the general slowdown in global economy, the removal of subsidy on oil and other related issues. As I speak, no country is known to have been spared from the effects of these shocks.

It is against this background that our various Budgets from the inception of this Administration have been target-specific and responsive to the prevailing realities and aspirations of their respective years. Each Budget was designed to respond strongly to the unpredictable macroeconomic environment in which it will be implemented. Put together, they tell the story of our odyssey as a polity and as an economy – from our first Inauguration on January 27, 2016 to this very moment.

In 2015, we inherited a BUDGET OF STABILITY from the outgoing Administration and did our best to quickly stabilize our State, which was severely unsettled and divided at the time. In 2016, we put together a BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION and used it to make further gains in stabilizing our civic space. In 2017 our BUDGET OF NEW DIRECTION marked a departure from many unprofitable old ways, with remarkable gains in security, youth empowerment, inclusivity, civil service reforms and tertiary education. By 2018 we had a BUDGET OF SUSTAINABLE GROWTH which launched us in earnest into an infrastructural renaissance that is still ongoing.

In 2019, we produced a BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION and solidified our gains as we headed into elections for a second term bid which proved highly successful and enabled us to continue serving our people. By 2020 we made a BUDGET OF PROSPERITY which helped us to continue the positive results we were seeing in all our thematic governance areas and enabled us to keep driving our upward growth trajectory. It also helped us to protect our people from the worst of the Covid-19 controversy in which we recorded zero cases. In 2021 we crafted a BUDGET OF ACCELERATED RECOVERY to get rid of the horrible economic and humanitarian aftermath of the pandemic on our people.

2022 was the year of our BUDGET OF ACCELERATED RESULT and by then, we were unveiling our achievements and no one could deny us the credit for our massive strides in good governance anymore. By 2023 we felt confident enough in our service and in ourselves to do a BUDGET OF TRANSFORMATION which enabled us to complete and showcase many more of our projects and put them into use for our people. The foregoing gave us the boldness to approach Kogites for their electoral support once again, this time for our chosen successors. Once again, they obliged us generously, hence our triumph of November 11, 2023. It is against this background that we bring you a 2024 BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION AND CONTINUITY FOR INCLUSIVE GROWTH. It is intrinsically resilient and painstakingly curated to give the incoming Administration fundamental advantages built on our foundational efforts. No doubt, they will do justice to it.

Mr. Speaker, Hon. Members, the key assumptions that informed our projection for the year 2024 are contained in the table below:

Item 2023 Approved

National Inflation 17.16%

National Real GDP Growth 3.75%

State Inflation

State Real GDP Growth

State GDP Actual

Oil Production Benchmark (MBPD) 1.72

Oil Price Benchmark $75.00

NGN:USD Exchange Rate N700.00

Mr. Speaker, Hon. Members, it is in light of the above, that the year 2024 draft Budget has been drafted to enhance Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), aggressively pursue repayment of debt owed us by the Federal Government, provide more conducive environment for our Development Partners across the world to contribute to the State economy; mobilize private sector investments to the State; encourage Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) and more importantly, block all wastages and leakages in our revenues as well as emphasize the completion of all on-going projects/programs while bringing on board, few new critical ones that are in line with the priorities of the New Direction Administration.

In doing this, our proposed Budget for 2024 can be aptly regarded or tagged as “BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION AND CONTINUITY FOR INCLUSIVE GROWTH”

Mr. Speaker, Hon. Members, it is my hope and fervent belief that the proposed 2024 Budget is clearly indicative of our fair, sincere, and frank assessment of the amount the State can generate on its own, in addition to what it is projected to receive from the Federation Account Allocation and other sundry sources. Given the earlier indices espoused, this Draft Budget is higher than that of 2023 based on credible and realistic assumptions on the State Revenue Cash inflow available and the current economic realities, nationally and globally.

As you will expect, there are several initiatives planned in the draft Budget to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal on our people. These include deliberate provisions to strengthen our social protection interventions, basic rural infrastructure, food production and agricultural value chain, SMEs under the relevant programs of NG-CARES program for results, IFAD VCDP (Value Chain Development Program), APPEALS etc. Efforts will be put in place to seek new partnership with our Development Partners as well as key into the ongoing national wage review negotiations within the limit of the State resources as well as adopting Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) vehicle options as ways to cushion the escalating costs of goods and services on our people.

Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, Ladies and Gentlemen, the 2024 Budget focuses on continued provision of physical infrastructure, human capital development, job creation, wealth creation and poverty reduction in our dear State.

The State Government intends to achieve these through prudent use of resources and scaling up of our expenditures in Health, Education, Agriculture, Water Resources, Environment, Housing and Support for Women and Youth Empowerment programmes.

Distinguished Honourable Members of Kogi State House of Assembly, with the features that I have highlighted above, it is obvious that the 2024 Budget is much more about our people and the acceleration of the delivery of basic infrastructure and social services to them. Specifically, the following critical areas of the State’s economy shall be accorded serious priority by the 2024 Budget. They are:

– Good Governance and Leadership

– Infrastructure Development and Maintenance

– Education and Human Capital Development

– Improved Health Care and Social Welfare

– Agriculture and Rural Development

– Security and Peace Building

– Women Empowerment and Gender Equity

– Environment and Sustainable Development

– Industry and Commerce

– Information and Communication Technology and Innovation

– Youth Empowerment and Sport Development

– Entertainment, Culture and Tourism Development

– Housing

– Enhanced Internally Generated Revenue (IGR)

– Water and Sanitation (to mention but a few)

Our objective of focusing on these sectors is to make the State a healthy tourist center, enhance the creation of new job opportunities for our youths and women, create a well secured environment that will boost commerce, trade, and investment in the state.

Kogi State derives the bulk of its budget funding from the Federation Accounts, but we are resolved not to continue with this trend any longer. Consequently, we shall restructure and intensify our Internally Generated Revenue efforts to expand the scope of the State’s earnings and reduce our over dependence on the Federation Account allocation.

Mr. Speaker, Hon. Members, having made the above remarks, let me proceed to give a brief highlight of the performance of the out-going 2023 Revised Budget.

REVIEW OF 2023 REVISED BUDGET PERFORMANCE

Mr. Speaker Sir, Hon. Members, you will recall that the 2023 Revised Budget was tagged: “BUDGET OF TRANSFORMATION” by this Administration and the total revised Budget for the year 2023 was N197,599,674,912 for both Recurrent and Capital Expenditures. The approved recurrent revenue for 2023 was N135,757,165,806 out of which N85,016,014,066 was collected as at the end of September, 2023, representing 62.62% performance. The approved capital receipts for the same period was N61,842,509,106 out of which N27,939,500,263.98 was released, representing 45.18% performance as at the end of September, 2023.

A total sum of N134,833,622,127 was approved for recurrent expenditure in 2023. However, the sum of N92,394,796,194.16 was spent as at September, 2023, representing 68.53% performance.

The approved capital expenditure for 2023 was N62,766,052,785 out of which the sum of N21,923,505,085.33 was expended as at September, 2023, representing 34.93% performance.

Mr. Speaker Sir, Hon. Members, the Hon. Commissioner for Finance, Budget and Economic Planning will later give further details of the Budget Performance in the process of delivering the year 2024 Budget breakdown.

2024 BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION AND CONTINUITY FOR INCLUSIVE GROWTH

Mr. Speaker, Distinguished Members of this Honourable House, our Year 2024 draft Budget is designed to enhance the mobilization of Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), collect debts owed the State by the Federal Government, continue to collect and recover the State’s equity share in Obajana Cement Company, provide a more conducive environment for our development partners from all over the world in order to contribute maximally to the State’s economy.

Also, the draft Budget is drafted to further attract private sector investments to the State, encourage public-private-partnerships, emphasize completion of on-going projects while bringing on board new ones and, most importantly, eliminate wastes and leakages from the State’s revenue value-chain. This is why, as stated earlier, this draft Budget for 2024 is proposed as a BUDGET OF CONSOLIDATION AND CONTINUITY FOR INCLUSIVE GROWTH.

To this end, the budget has an estimated outlay of N258,278,501,339.00 for the Year 2024 as against N197,599,674,912.00 Revised Approved Budget for year 2023. This makes the 2024 draft Budget higher by N60,678,826,427.00 compared to 2023 Revised Budget, representing a 30.71% increase.

The 2023-2025 Multi-Year Budget is premised on Zero-Based Budgeting principles and is tailored towards actualization of our 32 Years State Development Plan. The key targets from a fiscal perspective are:

  1. Ensuring the actualization of the development priorities of the state government as articulated in the Kogi State Development Plan and respective Sector Implementation Plans (SIPs).
  2. Maintaining a favourable proportion of Capital to Recurrent Expenditure.
  3. To complete all on-going projects and adding new projects in the critical area of needs.
  4. Expanding our revenue generation capacity to reduce over dependence on federation allocation.
  5. Maintaining a sustainable debt position thereby reducing our State Domestic Debt profile.
  6. To provide a conducive environment for investors and Donor Agencies to operate in the State.
  7. To enhance greater transparency, accountability and proper public expenditure.

The fiscal strategy of Government is anchored on the on-going Public Financial Management Reform (PFM). Over the period 2023-2025 the State Government fiscal policy is directed at:

i. Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of spending.

ii. Greater control of the wage bill.

iii. Directing capital expenditure to critical infrastructure such as Road, Housing, Education, Health and such other thematic areas as Job creation, Youth Engagement, Infrastructure and Utilities and Public Sector and Pension Reforms.

iv. Boosting revenue receipts by identifying and blocking revenue leakages; wastages and gradual fiscal consolidation to achieve a level of public spending consistent with macro-economic stability and sustainable debt.

BUDGET OBJECTIVES AND TARGETS

Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, we have tried to ensure that our good governance aspirations find expression in the 2023 Budget, with the specific fiscal objective being effective allocation of scarce resources to identified critical programmes and projects, in line with the following major targets:

i. To improve the quality of education at all levels and make it accessible to all citizens and to produce the bulk of skilled manpower necessary for economic transformation of the State locally.

ii. To further democratize access to healthcare by sustained improvement in the efficiency of our healthcare delivery system.

iii. To ensure food security and generate a high proportion of the GDP from agriculture.

iv. To exploit the full potential of our economy and expand trade and commerce in the State.

v. To ensure that products from our agricultural and industrial activities have access to markets locally and internationally.

vi. To ensure gainful employment of youths and create opportunities for the development of their talents.

vii. To achieve sustainable development and promote social and economic development through culture and tourism.

viii. To establish the necessary framework for a robust Mining and Solid Minerals sector, to brand Kogi State as the foremost solid minerals mining destination in Nigeria.

ix. To improve the road network in urban and rural areas through construction of new roads, bridges and rehabilitation of existing ones.

x. To improve the quantity, quality and access to safe water for domestic, commercial and industrial uses as well as improve sanitation and hygiene practices among the citizens.

xi. To ensure sustainable use of the environment and continuous management of environmental challenges such as pollution, deforestation, flooding, degradation, gully erosion and other ecological problems.

xii. To facilitate the social and economic development of the State by ensuring easy and responsible access to lands for agricultural, residential, commercial and industrial uses to all citizens and investors.

xiii. To improve the quantity of decent housing and facilitate the creation of viable urban communities in the state.

xiv. To improve and expand affordable housing options through public-private partnerships.

xv. To cut the cost of governance and ensure that our people are the ultimate beneficiaries of public resources.

xvi. Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, before we leave office on 27th January, 2024, we will strive to complete every single project we have started in each of the 21 Local Government Areas and we are determined to pay off every contractor we have commissioned to work for us.

SUMMARY OF THE 2024 DRAFT REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE ESTIMATES

In summary, the draft 2024 Revenue and Expenditure Estimates i.e. the proposed 2024 Budget, has an estimated outlay of N258,278,501,339.00. This total budget outlay of N258,278,501,339.00 is divided into Recurrent Expenditure of N145,736,429,609.00 representing 56.43% and Capital Expenditure of N112,542,071,730.00 representing 43.57%. This summary is graphically represented in the table below:

Expenditure Item Allocation %

Recurrent Expenditure 145,736,429,609 56.43%

Capital Expenditure 112,542,071,730 43.57%

Total 258,278,501,339 100.00%

Code Sectors Allocation %

01 Administration 64,314,563,318 24.90%

02 Economic 82,007,729,867 31.75%

03 Law and Justice 14,975,359,809 5.80%

05 Social 96,980,848,345 37.55%

Total 258,278,501,339

100.00%

Mr. Speaker Sir, Honourable Members, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, let me now present to you the Year 2024 Draft Budget for your usual consideration and approval. The total Budget package for Year 2024 is N258,278,501,339.00 as against N197,599,674,912.00 approved in the revised budget for Year 2023 which is an increase of N60,678,826,427.00 or 30.71% when compared with the 2023 Approved Revised Budget.

I now have the singular honour and privilege to invite this Honourable House to:

Note:

i. that a total estimated recurrent revenue of N168,406,138,861 consisting of N30,235,332,685 from internal sources, N85,650,179,027 as statutory allocation from the Federation Account, N34,017,078,421 from Value Added Tax (VAT), N2,004,373,101 from Budget Augmentation, N6,392,704,874 from Exchange Differentials, N418,303,951 from Non-oil revenue, N2,577,798,101 from forex equalization, N200,000,000 from Recovery Excess Bank Charges, N910,368,701 from Solid Mineral, and N6,000,000,000 from Electronic Money Transfer (EMT)

ii. That the Recurrent Revenue for the year 2024 stands at N168,406,138,861 while the estimated Personnel Cost, Overhead Cost, other Recurrent and Public Debt Charges for the same period stand at N65,071,493,479, N56,693,794,550, N8,871,141,580 and N15,100,000,000 respectively, putting the total recurrent expenditure for 2024 at N145,736,429,609.

iii. Based on the above, we have a total estimated Transfer Surplus of N22,669,709,252 as part of Capital Development Fund.

iv. that the estimated Capital Receipt is N89,872,362,478 comprising Internal and External Loans, Aids and Grants. However, if the transfer Surplus of N22,669,709,252 is added to this amount, we shall have N112,542,071,730 as available fund for capital development projects.

v. that the total estimated capital expenditure stands at N112,542,071,730

vi. that the total estimated revenue (i.e recurrent revenue and capital receipts) stands at (N258,278,501,339 for the year 2024 and the total estimated expenditure i.e Recurrent and Capital stands at N258,278,501,339) for the year 2024 making the 2024 Draft Budget a balance budget.

APPROVE:

  1. Total estimated revenue (Recurrent Revenue and Capital Receipts) of N258,278,501,339
  2. Total estimated expenditure (Recurrent and Capital) of N258,278,501,339
  3. A balanced budget of N258,278,501,339 for 2024 fiscal year.

Mr. Speaker Sir, Honourable Members, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is now my pleasure to formally present to you the year 2024 Draft Budget, otherwise known as our “Budget of Consolidation and Continuity for Inclusive Growth” for your deliberation and, hopefully, accelerated approval.

As I bid farewell to this Honourable Assembly today, I wish to extend my heartfelt gratitude again for your dedication to our State and People over the years and commitment to the growth and success of our dear State.

As January 27th, 2024 when I will wind down my Administration approaches and we all prepare to welcome the new Government of His Excellency, Governor-Elect Ahmed Usman Ododo, it is my heartfelt desire that you extend even greater levels of cooperation to my him.

I look forward to seeing the incoming Administration building on the foundation laid by mine while working together with all stakeholders across the State to achieve even greater heights than we did. Let us therefore embrace this transition with excitement and optimism, knowing that our collective efforts will propel our State to new horizons.

I thank my Team for their faithful service. We came from different backgrounds and united for the best interests of our State and people. Despite notable hiccups, we have become a family that cannot be broken. We will work through any problems we may have with each other and find common ground from which to mentor our successors and move on to the next levels of our own lives and careers.

I extend my sincere gratitude to His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR for his leadership to us and the nation in the past 7 months during which some really hard but necessary decisions have been taken which will no doubt help Nigeria to work better for all Nigerians. Mr. President has also inspired our own leadership into doing what is necessary even if it is not expedient at the moment.

God bless Kogi State!

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria!

And God bless us all!

To God be the Glory!

Thank you for listening.

YAHAYA BELLO, CON

Governor of Kogi State

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