Gombe State government has reviewed the size of the 2020 budget down to the sum of N107b from the initially N130.8b due to the negative effects of COVID-19 pandemic.
The State Governor, Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya has therefore signed the revised 2020 budget into law on Monday after it was approved by the State House of Assembly.
The initially signed budget, tagged ‘budget of change’ was 130, 828,737,593.48 billion and now reviewed downward to the sum of 107,371,408,593.48 billion Naira due to the global economic shock as a result of COVID-19 pandemic which has affected national and personal incomes.
The revised capital expenditure for the 2020 fiscal year as passed by the House of Assembly and signed into law by Governor Inuwa Yahaya now stands at N57,006,609,493.48 as against the initial figure of N71,046,953,693.48 while the recurrent expenditure is reviewed down to N50,364,799,100.00 against the earlier signed figure of N59,781,783,900.00, leaving a total variance at N23,457, 329, 000 which means a decrease in percentage terms of 17.6.
Inuwa Yahaya said revising the appropriation law to face current reality became necessary to enable the government to review its priority areas.
He said despite the downwards review of the budget, the state government ensures that health, education, agriculture and other critical sectors remain the top priorities of the state.
The Governor further said that the health sector’s budget, in particular, has been increased as a demonstration of the administration’s resolve to combat covid-19 and its socio-economic impact on the lives and means of livelihood of the people.
He also said the sum of N500 million Naira is provided for the Taskforce to boost the health sector and equally N500 intervention for activities including the establishment of isolation centres, renovating, upgrading and equipping of the health care facilities as well as in procurement and provision of medical supplies.
He said Government will remain focused in strengthening the health system, particularly on issues around covid-19 such as the commencement of coronavirus testing in Gombe and the upgrading of general hospitals in Kumo, Billiri and Bajoga.
The Governor also said that Government has also made provisions in the revised budget for other sectors of the economy with a view to ensuring that the state prepares ahead of the post-COVID-19.
He said N300 million has been provided for Agricultural inputs, seeds and chemicals, N1 billion for youths empowerment, N1 billion for women empowerment while N150 Million has been earmarked for enforcement of law and order by the ministry for internal security and ethical orientation.
He added that the Ministry of Commerce has also been allocated the sum of N500 million naira to boost small and medium enterprises while N350 million was provided to facilitate public awareness and sensitization on covid-19 and other relevant issues.
Governor Yahaya noted that in the revised budget, the government has also made provision of 700 million nairas for the provision of palliatives to the vulnerable to support them recover their means of livelihood post-COVID-19 as contained in a statement by Ismaila Uba Misilli, Senior Special Assistant, Media and Publicity to the Governor.