FG to spend N43.5bn on child immunisation in 2019 ― Akabueze

Director General of the Budget Office of the Federation, Mr Ben Akabueze has disclosed that Federal Government plans to spend N43.5 billion on routine child immunisation in the 2019 fiscal year.

This is as Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma assured that government will continue to prioritise health expenditures even with dwindling resources.

At the Nigeria Value for Money in the Health Sector Workshop held in Abuja on Tuesday, Akabueze said there was a need to upscale allocation to primary health care while calling for equity in the allocation of funds to different areas in the sector.

He explained that because Nigeria was operating a deficit budget it has become very difficult for the country to further borrow to fund projects in the health sector

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According to him, this has placed a limitation on “how much we can borrow”, saying that in order to turn the tide around, Nigeria should seek ways to attract other sources of funding.

Udoma on his own part said the government was working to improve the country’s mortality rate, which is among the lowest in the continent.

He said the constrained fiscal space occasioned by a drop in oil price and disruption to crude production continues to reflect on revenues.

“The present administration came to meet a very constrained fiscal space. Revenue dropped from N10.07 trillion in 2014 fiscal year to as low as N5.68 trillion in 2016.

Even though it recovered somewhat to N7.17 trillion and N9.17 trillion in 2019 and 2018, it is still low compared to the amount in 2014,” he said.

The minister also said that dwindling donor funding has further compounded the matters with the country transition from the status of a poor country to a developing economy.

He, therefore, noted that notwithstanding the government’s tight revenue inflow, there is need to increase expenditure in the health sector added that it is collaborating with governments at all levels to on the need to maximize value for allocation to the sector.

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