The Lagos State House of Assembly on Tuesday re-ordered the state 2016 budget by a total of N44.9 billion as requested by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode. The lawmakers took the decision at the plenary session following a letter from the governor requesting for re-ordering of the budget.
The letter, dated September 3, 2016, had been read on the floor and was subsequently committed to the House Committee on Economic Planning and Budget. Ambode said in the letter that the re-ordering was to enhance efficient delivery of services and world class infrastructure to the people of the state.
However, objectives of the re-ordering as contained in the committee’s report were adopted as a resolution of the House. The governor had in the letter said that the re-ordering, if approved by the lawmakers, would ensure connectivity, maintain fiscal strategy and sustain expenditure profiles.
The letter also stated that it would improve capital expenditure ratio from its present 50:50 to 61:39; and ensure completion of the first phase re-modelling of the Emergency Response System. It said that the re-ordering would also upgrade facilities at Cappa and Ikeja Command Centres. They also include: rehabilitation of hospitals, relocation of the Mile 12 Market, continuous delivery of Light-up Lagos Initiative, up-scaling of road construction and rehabilitation.
Others are re-ordering from the capital expenditure was N21.9 billion, while re-ordering from recurrent expenditure amounted to N23 billion totalling N44.9 billion. Funds for the re-ordering, drawn from different Ministries, Department and Agencies in the state, would be allocated to other MDAs for the execution of critical projects. This brought the total capital expenditure in the 2016 budget to N404.3 billion, while the recurrent expenditure increases to N258.2 billion. In spite of the re-ordering, the total 2016 budget size remained N662.6 billion.
Ambode had on December 17 presented the state’s 2016 budget proposal of N662.588 billion to the House of Assembly. He then pledged that his administration would not only implement the budget faithfully, but also ensure that it works in the best interest of Lagosians. Ambode, who christened the 2016 budget “The Peoples Budget”, said, “it is an improvement of 26 per cent over the budgets of 2014 and 2015 respectively which stood at N489.6 billion individually”. Ambode said: “The increase will enable our government to focus on the present challenges of security, and traffic gridlock resolution. “Others include physical and social infrastructural development, which has thrown up new challenges quite different from what we used to experience and have always known.”