Rivers Lawmakers Give Nod To Revised 2020 Budget

The Rivers State 2020 revised budget estimates of 300 billion naira has been passed by the Rivers State House Assemby for the service of the state from 1st January , 2020 to 31st December 2020.

This followed a presentation of report by the Chairman Appropriation Committee, Enemi Alabo George, and subsequent debates on the report.

Presenting the report  on the floor of the House, the Appropriation Committee Chairman said the standing committee having looked at the estimates critically with inputs from all relevant ministries and agencies observed that the proposed estimates if passed would be sourced by different revenue sources such as statutory allocations.

He noted that notable proposed reductions are from Ministry of Works which was cut from N93bn to N53bn and Ministry of Education from N49bn to N12bn while provision was made for N2.3bn as public health emergency fund to combat the Covid 19 pandemic.

George said the committee recommended that the proposed estimate of N300bn with a breakdown of N129bn as recurrent and N171bn as capital expenditure be approved.

Majority of the lawmakers who spoke during debate including Majority Leader Martin Amaewhule, Deputy Leader Barianee Deeya, Christian Ahiakwo of Onelga  Constituency 1and Michael Chinda of Obio/Akpor Constituency 2 supported the passage of the estimates noting that the budget was passed earlier without provision for Covid-19 pandemic.

The legislators who expressed optimism that the N300bn target will be met also maintained that the capital expenditure stand a greater percentage than the recurrent expenditure.

Speaker, Ikuinyi Owaji-Ibani while giving report after committee of the whole said members expressed optimism in terms of achieving the estimates as presented and its realization and commended members for their effective representation of their constituents.

It would be recalled that Governor Nyesom Wike had proposed a downward review of the 2020 Budget estimates from N530 bn naira to #300 bn naira to suit the current economic realities caused by the Covid 19 pandemic.

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