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Gov Umahi signs revised 2020 Budget of #132b into Law

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By David Uka, Abakaliki

Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi state has signed into law, the revised 2020 budget of N132,002,391,626.66.

The revised budget had a 25.9 percent reduction from the earlier budget of N178,136,634,975.38 which was passed into law in January.

Also while it has a total Covid-19 expenditure of N28,615,000,000.000 accounting for 21.68% of the total budget expenditure.

Umahi while signing the law from Isolation through virtual meeting said the state was focusing much on Agriculture to recover from the pandemic.

He said he was not ready to share the state allocation with those criticizing his administration as according to him, he has done lots of human empowerments in the state.

“Let nobody think that my administration will one day assemble whatever we get in Abuja and begin to share it. I will not share Ebonyi money. Ebonyi state is a construction site, we have done a lot of empowerment, we have done a lot of projects.

Speaking at the  event, Commissioner for Finance, Orlando Nweze said that the downward revision of the budget became necessary due to the country’s economic challenges which affected financial resources of the State.

According to him, the reasons for the dwindling finances include; the negative effect of COVID-19 pandemic and the reduction in the oil prices from the original $57 dollars per barrel to a Federal Government approved $25 dollars per barrel.

Other are; a reduction in the nation’s oil production per day from 2.187million barrel per day to 1.7million barrel per day and devaluation of the Naira to Dollar from a rate of N305 per $1 to a rate of N360 per $1.

Mr Orlando said the state aligned itself with the Federal expected Gross Domestic Product, GDP of  -4.42% and inflation rate of 14.13%. In producing the budget.

Mr Orlando said that as a result of the expected low receivables from all sources of revenue, various items were either  reduced or in some cases removed entirely from different MDAs in the approved 2020 budget.

“In coming up with the 2020 revised budget, all sectors were affected in the earlier mentioned adjustments, however, special attention was paid to the MDAs that has direct dealing with the COVID-19 crisis”, he added.

A breakdown of the budget shows that for recurrent expenditure, Personnel cost reduced by 14.21% from N18.158B to N15.577B.

Also, while overhead cost increased by 23.43% from N22.922B to N28.293B, recurrent contingency was reduced by 80% from N5B to N1B.

For capital expenditure, there was a 33% reduction in Capital Expenditure from N127.056B to N85.132B and capital contingency was reduced by 60% from N5B to N2B.

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