President Buhari presents N13.08 trillion Budget


Following President Muhammadu Buhari’s session request to the senate, he on Thursday presented an appropriation of N13.08 trillion expenditure for 2021 fiscal year to the National Assembly for approval.

In the appropriation bill tagged ‘Budget of Economic Recovery and Resilience’ delivered to the joint chamber of NASS, Buhari proposed about N9 trillion for recurrent expenditure and N3.85 trillion for capital projects.

Highlighting the 2021 Capital Projects, Buhari said that key capital spending allocations in the budget included the Ministry of Works and Housing getting N404 billion.

Others he said were Power N198 billion, inclusive of N150 billion for the Power Sector Recovery Plan; Transportation, N256 billion and Defence, N121 billion.

“Agriculture and Rural Development, N110 billion; Water Resources, N153 billion; Industry, Trade and Investment, N51 billion; Education, N127 billion; Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), N70 billion.

“Health – N132 billion; Zonal Intervention Projects – N100 billion; and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) – N64 billion.”

The President announced that a major part of the 2021 recurrent cost estimate is allocated to paying salaries and overheads in MDAs providing these critical public services.

These include N227.02 billion for the Ministry of Interior; N441.39 billion for the Ministry of Police Affairs; N545.10 billion for Ministry of Education; N840.56 billion for Ministry of Defence; and N380.21 billion for Ministry of Health.

The President said that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development would facilitate the integrated development of its sector.

This, he said would be by promoting crops’ value chains as well as providing rural roads, water and sanitation, veterinary and pest controls, grazing, food and strategic reserves, and access to inputs and extension services.

“The 157 per cent increase in the capital allocation to the health sector is to enhance the capacity to deliver healthcare services through the procurement of equipment, vaccines and other facilities.

“Two centres of excellence, as well as one Accident and Emergency Centre, will be equipped in Federal Teaching Hospitals in each geopolitical zone.

“In addition, numerous Primary Health Care Centres will be equipped and upgraded across the six geopolitical zones.

“Furthermore, funds have been allocated for the expansion of the Midwives Service Scheme in the six geo-political zones.

“To enhance occupational safety, funds have been provided for the provision of Personal Protective Equipment for health workers.”

Buhari further said that the Ministry of Education’s capital allocation had been increased by 65 per cent to improve the education of children.

“Funds have been provided for the provision of scholarship awards to Nigerian students at home and abroad.

“We have provided funds for the upgrade of security and other infrastructural facilities in our Unity Colleges nationwide.”

The President disclosed that the 2021 Budget deficit (inclusive of Government-Owned Enterprises and project-tied loans), is projected at N5.20 trillion.

According to him, the amount represents 3.64 percent of estimated GDP, slightly above the 3 per cent threshold set by the Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2007.

“It is, however, to be noted that we still face the existential challenge of Coronavirus Pandemic and its aftermath; I believe that this provides a justification to exceed the threshold as provided for by this law.

“The deficit will be financed mainly by new borrowings totalling N4.28 trillion, with N205.15 billion from Privatization Proceeds and N709.69 billion in drawdowns on multilateral and bilateral loans secured for specific projects and programmes.

Fatimah Oyesanmi

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