Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode while presenting the 2017 appropriation bill for approval by the Lagos State House of Assembly has revealed details of what the budget will cover. The budget, tagged ‘Golden Jubilee Budget’ is pegged at a total sum of N812.99 billion pending the approval by the Assembly.
The 2017 budget is N150.4 billion higher than the 2016 budget which stood at N662.58 billion with a Capital Expenditure of N512.46 billion and a Recurrent Expenditure of N300 billion. The capital and recurrent ratio of the budget stood at 63:37.
Speaking during the presentation, Ambode disclosed that a large portion of the budget would be expended on the new phase of 114 roads construction, rehabilitation and maintenance, health, among developmental projects. He added that the government has a key focus on roads that would open up the hinterlands, improve connectivity in the State and reduce travel time.
In his words, “we have maintained a conservative approach in estimating our Federal Allocation due to falling oil prices that was about $41.98per barrel at the time we finalized this budget; however the State expects an increase in Federal allocation through 13% derivation from Oil and Gas in 2017. In view of our financing gap, we shall continue to sustain deficit financing in the short-to-medium term; enhance revenue growth throughout the year on several initiatives including automation and efficient revenue administration.”
Ambode added that “we would explore more collaborations with local and international investors through Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) especially in the areas of Road network expansion, Transport, Housing, and the Environment.”
He further stressed that government would commence the Phase II of the 114 Local Government Roads project and the Fourth Mainland Bridge in 2017, adding that in the course of the 2017 Financial Year, “we shall carry out fundamental reforms on all our modes of transportation – roads, water and the walkways. In this wise, a Public Transport Infrastructure Bond will be issued in the course of the year.”
While speaking on security, Ambode said “we will remain steadfast in our responsibility to make the State safe and secure for all our citizens. We will continue to invest in Security. The Neighbourhood Safety Agency will become fully operational by 2017 with presence in all our Local Governments and LCDAs.”
“We will equally continue implementing the ease of doing business reforms – starting a business, property registration, tax payment, e-GIS/ Smart City project, continue to encourage investments in Lekki Free Trade Zone (FTZ), Badagry Deep Sea port and the Eko Atlantic project,” Ambode added.