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We are running a good race – Ajimobi
*Being text of a 2013 Budget speech delivered by the governor of Oyo State, Sen. Abiola Ajimobi, at the Oyo State House of Assembly, on January 14, 2013.
It gladdens my heart to stand before you today to present the Year 2013 Budget Proposal for Oyo State tagged “Budget of Transformation”, for consideration by the Honourable House. In my view, the content and structure of the proposal have captured, as far as possible, our shared vision for our beloved State.
We are all aware of the enormous challenges which this administration was confronted with on assumption of office in May 2011 and today, I am delighted to inform you that we have successfully laid a solid foundation for the restoration of the State to its pace-setter status. We have made tremendous efforts in expanding the frontiers of democracy and good governance. We have maintained a cordial working relationship with both the legislature and the judiciary in an atmosphere of mutual respect. We have promoted peace in the State through a journey that featured a partnership with the people, encapsulated in the theme, Ki Oyo lee daa, Ajumose gbogbo wa ni.
I had mentioned in my last budget speech that in any change process initial challenges are always envisaged and indeed we faced a lot of challenges in the preceding year. However, with the support and encouragement of the good people of Oyo State, we have remained focused and undaunted in our mission to transform the State and make it one of the best states in the country.
I had stated that sacrifice will be required from all concerned, especially the administrative and political leadership, in our joint efforts towards the restoration and transformation of this State for her positive future and for her people, especially the generations unborn. I have no doubt that I can always count on your support as we embark on the journey to the desired destination.
REVIEW OF 2012 BUDGET PERFORMANCE
The budget performance of the State was 43.05% in 2010, 46.68% in 2011 and 73% in 2012. This is a steady improvement in the State’s budget performance during the period under review. This reflects the concerted effort of my administration in pursuing the infrastructure reform required to return us to our pace-setter origin.
Madam Speaker, we are happy to state that this administration continues to make significant improvements in the quality of the State’s fiscal operations since we came into power on May 29, 2011. For example, we continue to leverage on the new orientation that is mainstreaming people as the beginning and the end of any legitimate and credible economic policy process. We continue to enhance the level and quality of participation in economic and other public policies, thereby fostering the initiation and implementation of people-centered programmes and projects.
Our deliverables to the people from our public outlay since can be attested to by all objective observers. Some of these are highlighted as follows:
Good Governance and Strategic Alliances
With reference to my speech last year we have now commenced the institutionalization of processes and systems to ensure popular participation, transparency and accountability in public governance. We have developed enduring strategic alliances with local and international development communities, which were at the lowest ebb at the time we came to power in May 2011. Notable examples include the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and other related documents with the World Bank, Bank Of Industry, Karma Foods, Sheraton Four Points, Aso Savings and Loans Plc., Islamic Development Bank and African Development Bank amongst others .
Peace and Security
In my last speech I mentioned that the relative peace and security being enjoyed in the State in the past months were the outcomes of some of our recent efforts, and we are not resting on our oars. We have increased the capacity of the “Operation Burst”. We also set up a State Security Trust Fund in our continued efforts to further guarantee the safety of lives and property in the State. We have also committed ourselves to providing necessary support to security agencies in the State to make them efficient and effective.
Through our free Health Mission, we continue to provide free checks and treatment to people across the State. In addition, we are launching a free ambulance service and a free health care scheme. We continue to intensify the immunisation against childhood diseases such as measles, polio etc in the State.
Wealth Creation and Economic Empowerment
Last year, I stated that we created 20,000 jobs under the YES-O scheme and were also launching 1,000 Keke Ajumose to address the challenges of unemployment, ensuring safety on our roads, and crime prevention and control in our society. I am happy to report that the YES-O scheme continues to be a success and has attracted funding support from the Federal Government. The cadets have been deployed to critical areas like environmental law enforcement, public works, agriculture and education to improve the socio-economic life of our people.
In the outgone year, Madam Speaker, I am pleased to inform you and the Honourable House that the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has provided training programmes to over 1,000 women to empower them economically. We have equally provided funds and working tools to over 1,500 women in the last one year in sundry economic activities to equip them for decent economic life. I am proud, Madam Speaker, to recall that this Honourable House has indeed passed a motion to acknowledge and commend the giant strides of the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.
Environment and Habitat
Madam Speaker, as we confront the enormous environmental challenges and move towards the urban renewal of our State, I can report that we have done extensive work to clean up the State Capital and beautify our cities. I am happy to report that our people have cooperated well in the quest for environmental sanitation and Ibadan and the whole of Oyo State will soon rank among the cleanest places in Nigeria.
A major indication that we are succeeding in this area is that while other parts of the country were tragically ravaged by flood last year, Oyo State was saved from another flood disaster.
Still on urban renewal, We observed that our people have imbibed the negative culture of illicit street and roadside trading, particularly in Ibadan. The danger in street trading is quite obvious. Apart from hampering free flow of vehicular movement and making our environment unwholesome, articulated vehicles do, on a regular basis, lose control resulting in deaths of our people. As we move traders from the streets, under the bridges and tension wire, we have commenced construction of neighbourhood markets with modern facilities where our traders and their clients can buy and sell with relative comfort. I wish to assure the good people of Oyo State that every neighbourhood will be provided with these facilities.
Building on our deliveries last year, we have successfully secured accreditation of courses at the Polytechnic, Ibadan and College of Agriculture, Igboora; paid N396 million WAEC fees of final year students in 2012; produced and distributed exercise books for pupils in primary schools; supplied sciences and home economic equipments to secondary schools; rehabilitated over 200 blocks for class-rooms across the State; resolved the ownership crisis of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso; and secured NUC’s approval for the establishment of The Technical University, Ibadan among others.
I am pleased to inform you, Madam Speaker, that our initiatives have started yielding results in secondary school education. For instance, when this Government assumed office in 2011, Oyo State was placed 34 out of 36 States in the performance sheet of WAEC result. However, through our initiatives, we moved to 23rd position in 2012. Our goal is to place Oyo State among the first third states in the WAEC scoresheet.
Infrastructure is the foundation of modern economic development, hence our focus on the provision of infrastructure. In the last one year, we have
· Rehabilitated 199 roads and 7 bridges across the State.
· Embarked on construction of a fly-over bridge at Mokola, Ibadan which is now at advanced stage of completion.
· Embarked on construction of two 5-star Hotels in Ibadan through PPP arrangement.
· Commenced dualization of over 10 roads across the State. Every major entrance to every major city in Oyo State will be dualised.
· Completed the construction of a pilot motor park at Temidire, Ibadan in our drive towards decongesting our highways and enhance safety of lives. The construction of another modern motor park at Podo, Ibadan has reached an advance stage.
Staff Development and Welfare
We have continued to emphasize capacity building for our workforce in order to enable them discharge their duties creditably. We, again, promise that this will continue until we have a workforce that is first among others, and also able and willing to evolve and productively manage a private sector led Oyo State economy. We continue to adopt a long-term perspective to achieving this goal by, among others, restoring the glorious past of our educational standard. We continue to evolve necessary strategies and procedures towards achieving this goal. The government has to date, trained over 13,000 public servants. We have introduced a Workers Insurance Scheme and we shall soon launch a free transport scheme for our workers. We have increased car and housing allowance to civil servants by one hundred percent. We have maintained the prompt payment of workers’ salaries not later than 25th of every month and we have also continued to effect the payment of 13th month salary as bonus incentive for all staff.
Madam Speaker, I am bold and proud to state that these achievements were recorded because of the support of the House of Assembly. I cannot thank you, Madam Speaker and all members of the House, enough for your support.
2013 BUDGET PROPOSALS
Against the background above, the 2013 budget proposals have been guided by our desire to restore, transform and reposition the State to its former pacesetter status over the medium-term. The 2013 fiscal year will therefore focus on laying the foundation for this restructuring, hence it is tagged as the “Budget of Transformation”.
Policy Thrust and Philosophy
In line with the above, we have anchored the 2013 budgetary proposals on some policy thrust and philosophy. These include, but are not limited to the following:
(i) Realism of budgetary proposals will remain our watch word;
(ii) Prioritization and calendarisation of capital budget implementation;
(iii) Entrenching value-chain approach to sectoral development, especially in areas such as in Agriculture, investment promotion, and so on;
(iv) Mainstreaming administrative and independent monitoring and evaluation of budget implementation, with a view to deriving maximum value-for-money on public outlay, thereby maximizing its resultant positive effects on the lives of the citizenry;
(v) Institutionalization of e-governance through ingenious application of modern information technology, as a means of minimizing the menace of corruption, as well as enhancing the productivity of the workforce;
(vi) Mainstreaming public-private-partnership framework towards the provision of adequate semi-public goods and services;
(vii) Emphasis on environmentally sustainable public policies and economic governance processes; and
(viii) Mobilizing resources from eligible sources towards the generation of self-financing but development-inducing investment flows in the State.
SIZE OF 2013 BUDGET
We are presenting a total budget of N152bn. The recurrent expenditure of N82.97bn represents 54.55%, while the capital expenditure of N69.15bn represents 45.1%, of the total budget.
Our strategy for achieving this will depend greatly on aggressive internal revenue generation (IGR), through more effective and efficient tax administration, as well as extending our tax net to those that are hitherto outside the net. We will come back to this House shortly to request for necessary legislative muscle, not only on taxation, but also on other sundry regulatory issues that are due for review or to be proposed.
The structure of 2013 budgetary proposal reflects the priority the Government has accorded the various sectors in terms of their anticipated developmental effects. Consequently, the relative aggregate sectoral allocations are as follows:
i. Economy sector (including infrastructure) 36.26%
ii. Social Services sector 24.13%
iii. General Administration 25.46%
iv. Regional Development 14.15%
The high percentage of 60.39% of the total budget allocated to the economic and social services sectors underscores the State Government’s determination to pursue a people-centered, employment driven economic agenda. We consider this strategy as the best antidote to the problem of poverty among our people.
The Honourable Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budgeting will present a detailed analysis of the State’s 2013 approved Budget at a public forum in due course.
Madam Speaker, esteemed Honourable Members, our highly respectable traditional rulers, distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, the outgoing year posed several challenges to our administration. Incidentally, this has provided a rallying point for purposeful partnership among the Executive, Legislature, the various categories of leaders and the people of Oyo State, which enabled us to collectively surmount these challenges. For this, I hereby to express my profound gratitude to the leadership and members of the State House of Assembly, as well as other key stakeholder groups in the State.
The year 2013 Budget has been carefully structured towards consolidating the gains of the previous year. I therefore solicit your support for its effective, efficient and results-oriented implementation. I also look forward to counting on your continued support in the years ahead.
Madam Speaker, Honourable members of the House of Assembly, it is with great pleasure and delight that I hereby present this 2013 Oyo State Budget of Transformation for your consideration and timely passage.
I wish all the people of Oyo State, a prosperous 2013. God bless Madam Speaker, God bless the Honourable members of Oyo State House of Assembly, God bless our royal fathers and traditional rulers, God bless the government and good people of Oyo State, God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
To provide and promote sustainable free and qualitative health services and systems to all inhabitants of Oyo State.
To increase capacity of residents to earn a decent living through improved access to micro-credit scheme and a conducive business environment.