Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State Governor on Wednesday presented a budget of four hundred and forty-eight billion, six hundred and sixty million, seven hundred and seven-three thousand, four hundred and seventy-six naira (N448,660,773,476) for the 2021 fiscal year.
Governor Wike said the proposed budget represents more than a 20% increase over the 2020 Revised Budget of N300,000,000.00 only.
In the estimated budget, recurrent expenditure took one hundred and forty-two billion, seven hundred and seventy-six million, four hundred and eighty-nine thousand and four hundred and fifteen naira (N142,776,489,415). This represents 31.82 per cent of the estimated budget.
On the other hand, he said, the “projected the sum of three hundred and five billion, eight hundred and ninety-four million, two hundred and eighty-four million, and sixty-one kobo (N305, 894, 284.061), representing 68.18% of the total budget size as Capital Expenditure for the fiscal year 2021.”
Wike explained that out of this sum, seventy-six billion, one hundred and ninety-eight million, nine hundred and six thousand, one hundred and seventy-nine naira (N76,198,906,179) only, is for personnel costs, eighteen billion, eight hundred and sixty-three million, sixteen thousand, four hundred and thirty naira (N18,863,016,430), for overheads and forty-seven billion, seven hundred and four million, five hundred and sixty-six thousand, eight hundred and four naira, (N47,704,566,804) only, as grants and transfers to the consolidated revenue charges.
He said the 2021 budget will focus on four broad priorities:
1. To accelerate economic recovery, drive growth, and create opportunities for social progress.
2. Enhance human capital development and tackle poverty.
3. To strengthen our infrastructural base to accelerate economic development.
4. Create a pathway to food security and improved wellbeing through sustainable mechanized agriculture.
Accordingly, the objectives of the 2021 budget, include: to secure and consolidate inclusive economic progress and achieve a Gross Domestic Product growth rate of 5-6 percent.
• Drive the development of small and medium scale enterprises to enhance job creation, economic empowerment, and social progress.
• Ensure the continuous execution and delivery of more development projects, including roads, bridges, flyovers, healthcare, education, sports, and social welfare projects across the State.
• Create viable economic platforms and social investment schemes for tackling social exclusion, gender inequality, and mass poverty.
• Sustain a more business-friendly climate to attract both domestic and foreign direct investments into the State’s economy.
• Deliver comprehensive access to quality public education and affordable healthcare services for the citizens.
• Attract and support private sector investments into the development of agriculture to enhance food security.
The governor noted that the implementation of this budget in its original form was frustrated by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and its negative impact on the global, national, and state economies.
“This inevitably necessitated the review of the budget to reflect COVID-19 compliant as dictated by the challenging economic realities,” the former Education Minister explained.
2020 Budget Performance
Governor Wike recalled that the 2020 budget was reviewed downwards by about 40 per cent to three hundred billion, three hundred and seventy million, seventy-one thousand, one hundred and eighty-three naira, thirty-two kobo(N300,370,071,183.32) only.
The 2020 budget, christened “Reassurance, profound impact for inclusive growth and shared prosperity” with a total budget size of five hundred and thirty billion, eight hundred and thirteen million, three hundred and fifty-seven thousand, six hundred and nineteen naira (N530,813,357,619.00) only, was signed into law in December 2019.
He said that revised recurrent capital expenditure was fixed at one hundred and twenty-nine billion, three hundred and thirty-six million, six hundred and sixty-two thousand, twenty-eight naira, seventy-seven kobo (N129,336,662,028.77).
While the revised recurrent expenditure was one hundred and seventy-one billion, thirty-three million, four hundred and nine thousand, one hundred and fifty-four naira, fifty-five kobo (171,033,409,154.55) only.
Governor Wike disclosed that his administration from inception had prioritised the payment of salaries and pensions.
He assured the workers including the proposed five thousand new enlistments, that they will receive their salaries as when due in 2021.
RIVERS STATE 2021 BUDGET STATEMENT
by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state.
Today, we are before this hallowed chamber, once again, to propose our budget to continue with our efforts to realize our vision as a Government and our collective aspirations as a people for a better and prosperous life.
2. We are one people put together and blessed by God with enormous human and natural resources to harness and provide the good life for our families and a much better future for our children.
3. However, to realize this promise, we must continue to put our differences aside and work together as a people of faith with common destiny under one God.
4. Thank God, our efforts to build a strong, harmonious and progressive political family for our State is yielding the desired result.
5. Let me therefore appeal to the few remaining members of the opposition to join the one Rivers happy family united and working together to better the lives of all our people.
6. Mr. Speaker, Honourable members; five and half years ago, we started the journey to renew our State and advance the wellbeing of our people.
7. We promised that we will govern for all, protect everyone from the ravaging economic rains and do our best to deliver the dividends of democracy to all parts of the State.
8. Today, we have lived up to our duty and commitment and we are proud of our efforts and achievements thus far.
9. Even our worst critics cannot deny the progress we’ve recorded in delivering our commitments to our people in infrastructure, education, healthcare, rural development, urban renewal and others.
10. When I took the second oath of office as Governor, following the renewal of our mandate, we promised to work as hard to deliver more quality projects as if we were in our first term.
11. Twelve months ago, I delivered the first budget proposal of our second term in this very chamber and promised to continue with the transformation of the State with more roads, bridges and flyovers to ease transportation and enhance our development.
12. Today, we are here to give some account of our performance with the expiring budget of 2020 and propose a new budget one that will enable us to continue to serve and advance the best interest of our State and our people for the 12 twelve months budget circle.
13. But, before then, let me thank the Speaker and Honourable members of the State House of Assembly for the cooperation you’ve always extended to our government and also for your commitment to the progress of our State.
14. When the history of this government is written, I am sure your names will be boldly mentioned as part and parcel of the successes.
15. And there can be nothing more satisfying than to be acknowledged by your people for your services and contributions to their individual and collective progress.
16. However, our work is not done yet as we need your cooperation and support for the remaining years of our government.
17. That is why our passion right now is to continue to do our best at every moment and deliver progress with the new budget instrument for fiscal year 2021, which we will shortly lay before this House.
Review Of Budget Performance In 2019
18. Mr. Speaker, Honourable members; the 2020 budget, christened “Reassurance, profound impact for inclusive growth and shared prosperity”.
with a total budget size of five hundred and thirty billion, eight hundred and thirteen million, three hundred and fifty-seven thousand, six hundred and nineteen naira (N530,813,357,619.00) only, was signed into law in December 2019.
19. However, the implementation of this budget in its original form was frustrated by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and its negative impact on the global, national and state economies. This inevitably necessitated the review of the budget to reflect COVID compliant as dictated by the challenging economic realities.
20. Consequently, the 2020 budget was reviewed downwards by about 40 per cent to three hundred billion, three hundred and seventy million, seventy-one thousand, one hundred and eighty-three naira, thirty-two kobo(N300,370,071,183.32) only.
21. The revised recurrent capital expenditure was fixed at one hundred and twenty-nine billion, three hundred and thirty-six million, six hundred and sixty-two thousand, twenty-eight naira, seventy-seven kobo (N129,336,662,028.77).
22. While the revised recurrent expenditure was one hundred and seventy-one billion, thirty-three million, four hundred and nine thousand, one hundred and fifty-four naira, fifty-five kobo (171,033,409,154.55) only.
23. The budget was to be funded from the State’s traditional sources of revenue, including the projected refunds from the Federal Government on the execution of federal roads.
Performance of the 2020 budget
24. As at end of October 2020, the total net revenue collected was two hundred and twenty-six billion, five hundred and twenty-two million, thirty-one thousand, nine hundred and twenty-two naira, forty-five kobo (N226,522,031,922.45) representing about 75 percent overall proportional performance.
25. As expected, while receipts from federal allocations declined, internally generated recorded a net surplus of over twenty billion naira (N20,000,000,000.00) despite the pause we placed on the payment of taxes by small businesses.
26. Mr. Speaker, as affirmed in our budget statement, the revised 2020 budget was targeted at realizing two broad development goals:
27. First, to weather the economic challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and ameliorate the resultant pains on the people,
28. Second, to deliver as much development projects as possible within the ambit of our priorities and available resources.
29. The records show that the recurrent budget was fully implemented as we are up to date in the payment of salaries to workers and pensioners in addition to meeting overhead and other expenses for ministries, departments and agencies.
30. The capital budget also recorded over 78% performance leading to the delivery of several infrastructure projects in roads, education, health care, sports, administration of justice, and security.
31. During the period, we started the construction of Okoro-Nu-Odo, Rebisi, GRA junction, Rumuogba Rumuola and Abali legacy flyover projects.
32. We started work on the renewal of all roads and drainage infrastructures in Old GRA, Amadi Flats and New GRA in Port Harcourt.
33. We also awarded contracts for the dualization of Ezimgbu to Ken Saro-Wiwa road, Tombia extension to Ikwerre road, Forces Avenue, Orlumeni street, and Eastern bypass.
34. The construction of Odiokwu internal roads, Odiokwu-Oyigba road/bridge, Odiokwu-Anwunugboko road, and Isiokpo internal roads network, among others, all received substantial funding from this budget.
35. Funds were also released for the construction and or reconstruction works at Real Madrid Academy, Western Ahoada County High School, Government Secondary School, Okarki, Government Secondary School Ogu, Community Secondary School Obeakpu, Ndoki, Community Secondary School, Kugbo, Kalabari National College, Buguma, Bonny National Grammar School, Bonny, Government Secondary School, Abua Government Comprehensive Secondary School, Borikiri, Enitona High School, Oba-ama High School, Bakana, Community Secondary School, Omuanwa, Community Secondary School, Obu-ama, Community Secondary School, Eteo, Community Secondary School, Obu-ama, Vocational Craft Centre, Abonnema, and Community Secondary School Tombia.
36. We also funded the Mother and Child Hospital as well as the five zonal referral hospitals at Ahoada, Bori, Degema, Okehi and Omoku to advanced levels of completion.
37. Some other projects that were equally funded include; the National Industrial Court judges’ residential estate; shore protection at Ase-Azaga, Isukwu, Oniukwu, Obiofu, and Itu communities, shore protection at Ogbum-nu-abali sandfilling/reclamation; Kula sandfilling and reclamation, completion of former Rivbank building; and the construction of bus stops along Port Harcourt – Aba and Ikwerre roads.
38. The following projects have either been completed or will be completed by the end of December 2020, under the 2020 capital expenditure funding:
• expanded Real Madrid Academy, the only one of its kind in Africa;
• Bonny/Bile Waterfronts jetty;
• Mother and Child Specialist Hospital;
• Rumuekini – Aluu road;
• Elimgbu – Atali road;
• Bolo community internal roads;
• Saakpenwa – Bori road dualization;
• Abonnema ring road;
• Eteo – Sime – Nonwa – Kira road
• Tombia street dualization;
• Emeyal street;
• Gen. Diriyai street;
• Amaji street;
• Ndoni street;
• Elelenwo street;
• Obagi crescent;
• Nzimiro street and other adjoining streets,
• William Jumbo street;
• Herbert Macaulay street
• Forces Avenue;
• Birabi street;
• Birabi Extension;
• Sir Dr. Peter odili Close;
• Salvation Ministry Close;
• Woji road;
• Opobo crescent;
• Isaiah Odolu Street;
• Omerelu street;
• Rumuigbo street;
• Chief Johnson Amadi street;
• Igbodo street;
• Finima street;
• Rumuoparali street;
• Isaac Boro road;
• Ernest Ikoli street;
• Horsefall (Mbiama) street
• Harley Street;
• Olumeni street; and
• Abana street
39. Overall, we are satisfied with the performance of the 2020 budget as most of the objectives were substantially achieved even at a very challenging period.
40. We therefore look forward to doing much better with the 2021 budget.
The State’s economic outlook for 2021
41. Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, as we all know, Nigeria is currently in its second recession in five years with headline inflation at 14 per cent.
42. However, the Federal Government has projected that the country will exit recession in the first quarter of 2021. Indeed, the Central Bank believes that the national economy will even grow by not less than 2 per cent in 2021.
43. As a sub-nationality, Rivers State cannot avoid being affected by the external headwinds of a bad national economy.
44. We can only keep our fingers crossed and expect the Federal Government to implement the right and necessary policies to rescue the ailing economy from sliding further.
45. But, beyond this is the fact that the economy of Rivers State has remained resilient as evident not only in our capacity to generate more revenues than projected in fiscal year 2020, but also in our ability to fund our expenditures without deficits.
46. While we concede to the volatility of our economy, it is also not in a negative territory at this moment.
47. Rather, our economy is relatively strong and growing with such velocity that a 4 to 5 percent GDP growth estimates appears realistic for fiscal year 2021 when factored on the back of sustained fiscal consolidation, increasing public sector spending and the attraction of substantial private investments into the critical sectors of the State’s economy.
48. Therefore, the fiscal year 2021 will still be challenging, but our economy is more certain to navigate on a positive economy growth trajectory for much of 2021 insofar as we address the fiscal, policy and structural constraints that could undermine economic growth.
Policy trusts for the year 2021 budget
49. The 2021 budget will focus on four broad priorities:
• to accelerate economic recovery, drive growth and create opportunities for social progress;
• enhance human capital development and tackle poverty;
• strengthen our infrastructural base to accelerate economic development; and
• create a pathway to food security and improved wellbeing through sustainable mechanized agriculture
50. Accordingly, the objectives of the 2021 budget, includes:
• secure and consolidate inclusive economic progress and achieve a Gross Domestic Product growth rate of 5-6 per cent;
• drive the development of small and medium scale enterprises to enhance job creation, economic empowerment and social progress;
• ensure the continuous execution and delivery of more development projects, including roads, bridges, flyovers, healthcare, education, sports, and social welfare projects across the State;
• create viable economic platforms and social investment schemes for tackling social exclusion, gender inequality and mass poverty;
• sustain a more business friendly climate to attract both domestic and foreign direct investments into the State’s economy;
• deliver comprehensive access to quality public education and affordable healthcare services for the citizens; and
• attract and support private sector investments into the development of agriculture to enhance food security.
51. Overall, the measures in the budget will place the State on a stronger economic footing towards achieving the new Rivers vision for a peaceful, secure, inclusive and prosperous society.
52. Accordingly, the theme for the 2021 budget is: Recovery and Consolidation.
Funding the 2021 Budget
53. The budget will be funded from the following: Federation Accounts and Allocation Committee, 13% Oil Mineral Fund, internally generated revenue, value added tax, refunds for federal projects and excess crude oil deductions, domestic and foreign credit as well as grants.
The key Assumptions of the Budget
54. The key assumptions of the 2021 budget, which are predicated on the 2021-2023 Medium Term Expenditure Framework are as follows:
• Crude oil bench mark of USD 35 per barrel
• Crude oil production estimates of 1.8 million barrel per day
• Exchange rate of N360 to the Dollar; and
• Gross Domestic Product growth rate of 3-5%
• Inflation rate of 11.95%
2021 BUDGET ESTIMATES
55. Mr. Speaker, and distinguished members, we believe that our budgetary estimates should be as realistic as possible.
56. Accordingly, we are proposing a total budget size of four hundred and forty-eight billion, six hundred and sixty million, seven hundred and seven-three thousand, four hundred and seventy-six naira (N448,660,773,476) only, for fiscal year 2021. This represents more than 20% increase over the 2020 Revised Budget of N300,000,000.00 only.
The 2021 Recurrent Expenditure
57. The sum of one hundred and forty-two billion, seven hundred and seventy-six million, four hundred and eighty-nine thousand and four hundred and fifteen naira (N142,776,489,415) representing 31.82 per cent has been earmarked as Recurrent Expenditure for the 2021 fiscal year.
58. Out of this sum, seventy-six billion, one hundred and ninety-eight million, nine hundred and six thousand, one hundred and seventy-nine naira (N76,198,906,179) only, is for personnel costs, eighteen billion, eight hundred and sixty-three million, sixteen thousand, four hundred and thirty naira (N18,863,016,430), for overheads and forty-seven billion, seven hundred and four million, five hundred and sixty-six thousand, eight hundred and four naira, (N47,704,566,804) only, as grants and transfers to the consolidated revenue charges.
59. From inception, this administration has prioritized the payment of salaries and pensions and I wish to assure our workers, including the proposed five thousand new enlistments, that they will receive their salaries as when due in 2021.
60. Ministries, Departments and Agencies are also assured of prompt release of overheads to enable them run and deliver services to the people.
61. Furthermore, the increase in the recurrent budget over that of 2020 was also informed by our resolve to fight poverty with increased public spending, social assistance and investments in targeted empowerment programmes.
62. Mr. Speaker and Honourable Members, our administration is noted for the high premium we give to capital expenditure, which is the linchpin for the progress of any nation.
63. We have accordingly projected the sum of three hundred and five billion, eight hundred and ninety-foor million, two hundred and eighty-four million, and sixty-one kobo (N305, 894, 284.061), representing 68.18% of the total budget size as Capital Expenditure for fiscal year 2021.
64. The capital expenditure was constituted as follows:
• Administrative sector: – 87, 790,330,011.37
• Economic sector; – 105,077,364,248,.81
• Law and Justice: – 1,742,996,000.00
• Social sector – 132, 656,033,322.35
• Deductions/repayments – 38,000,000,000.00
65. Limited resources hinder our drive for delivery of projects and services, we are undaunted in our vision and focus to build a new and prosperous Rivers State.
66. Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, what we do with our capital expenditures holds the key to the level of progress and prosperity we envisage for our State and our people.
67. Accordingly, we intend to deploy our capital budget for 2021 fiscal year to advance economic growth and social progress, infrastructural development, human capital development, education, healthcare, security and social investments:
Economic growth and social progress
68. Investments in economic growth will result in substantial social progress and a better quality of life for citizens.
69. In this budget we have provided over 6 billion naira to stimulate economic growth through investments in commerce, culture and tourism, mineral resource development as well as address environmental challenges to improve the quality of life of all residents.
70. We have also provided thirteen billion, eight hundred and sixty-one million, four hundred and seven thousand, four hundred and fifty-one naira, ninety-seven kobo (N13,861,407,451.97) to fund various social and economic investment schemes to support the development of small and medium scale businesses in our efforts to create jobs and reduce poverty.
71. Besides we shall provide a special fund to support our youths to get their business ideas off the ground, enhance existing businesses and assuage the prevailing economic hardship being experienced by the vulnerable ones, among us.
72. The economic challenges of the COVD-19 pandemic clearly exposed our vulnerability to food insecurity. As a State we cannot be successful if we cannot provide the food and nutrition that we need to survive and be healthy from our fertile land resources.
73. Also, no other economic sub-sector can provide countless employment opportunities as commercial agriculture.
74. We are therefore willing to support the development of sustainable agriculture to create jobs for our teeing youths and ensure food security.
75. The sum of sixteen billion, one hundred and seven million, eighty thousand naira (N16,107,080,000.00) to embark on targeted investments in the agriculture value chain.
76. We will fully complete the Rivers Cassava Processing Company to stimulate a cassava revolution in the State for both domestic and international consumption,
77. We shall access the Central Bank’s funded agricultural programmes, concession all government farms and encourage the youths to take to profitable agriculture instead of searching for non-existent white-collar jobs.
78. The sum of over eighty-two billion, nine hundred and fifty-seven million, two hundred and ninety-five thousand, two hundred and forty-eight naira, eighty-one kobo (82,957,295,248.81), has been provided to fund the provision
79. We will deploy this money on both new and ongoing roads, education, healthcare projects and ensure that most are completed and put to use within 2020.
80. The following are some roads and other projects to be completed or started under the 2021 capital budget:
• the flyovers at Okoro-Nu-Odo, GRA junction, Rumuola, Rumuogba, Abali and Ikokwu to Aziiwe steet;
• the dualization of Ezimgbu – Ken Saro-Wiwa road, Ogbunabali road, Tombia extension to Ikwerre road, Egbema to Omokuroad, and Eastern bypass road
• the construction of first phase of Trans-Kalabari road with the peoples’ cooperation;
• the first phase of the Port Harcourt ring road;
• the construction of Odiokwu internal roads, Odiokwu-Oyigba road/bridge, and Ula Ehuda-Odioku-Anwunugboko-Ubeta-Ihuechi-Odiereke road;
• Ogoni – Andoni – Opobo unity road,
• Rumuji-Ibaa-Obele-Osiokpo road
• Ogu – Wakama road;
• Mbiama – Okarki road;
• Oyigbo – Obete road
• Okochiri internal roads, phase 2;
• Opobo internal roads;
• Ngo internal roads
• Akpabu – Omudioga – Egbeda road
• Rumuodogo 1 & 2 roads
• Omoku-Aligwu-Kreigani-Oduoboburu road;
• Odufo – Akpoku – Umuoye road;
• Okomoko – Okehi – Okpkpoal road
• Mgbuosimini – Nkpor – Mgbuodohia roads;
• Emoh-Elok – Okpeden road
• Okoboh – Emesu road
• Nwiakara – Kono road; and
• Umuogba-Umuokpurukpu-Umueke-Umunju-Umuelechi- Eberi link road
81. Other projects to be executed, include:
• Abonnema/Obonnoma Sandfilling and reclamation;
• Bakana sandfilling and reclamation;
• Okrika sandfilling and reclamation;
• Marine base Jetty;
82. For us, quality public education remains the key to breaking cycles of poverty. Every well educated person has the potential to make a significant difference in the lives of their kids and family.
83. We are already tackling the deficiencies in our school systems, including the shortage of teachers in our primary and secondary schools across the State.
84. Although a good number of schools have been rebuilt, renovated or under reconstruction, there is still a lot to be done.
85. We have therefore provided in the 2021 budget the sum of thirty-billion naira) (N30,000,000,000) only, to continue to reconstruct existing schools, boost infrastructure, enhance access and retention rates and improve educational outcomes in our schools throughout the State.
86. While efforts will be made to complete the ongoing schools, we shall nevertheless kick-start the reconstruction of the following schools:
• Okrika Grammar School;
• Government Secondary School, Eneka;
• KCC Marywood;
• Ascension High School, Eleme;
• Comprehenbsive High School, Alesa
• Ngo Secondary School;
• Rumuapara Community Secondary School; and
• Ahoada Girls High School.
87. Besides making provisions to support our tertiary institutions to boost their infrastructure and faculty, we have also provided for the take-off of the new campuses of the Rivers State University at Emohua, Ahoada and Etche as well as directed the revitalization of the University’s agric based Onne campus.
88. We also approved new faculty buildings for the Faculty of Basic Clinical Sciences; Faculty of Clinical Sciences and the Department of Pathology of the College of Medical Sciences of the Rivers State University.
89. We will also start the construction of two 900-bed hostels and the 1500 human capacity auditorium for the Yenagoa campus of the Nigerian Law School.
90. In this budget we have provided twenty-five billion, one hundred and eleven million, seven hundred and twenty-eight thousand naira (N25,111,728,000.00), only for health care delivery services for 2021.
91. Here we will focus on;
• completing the four zonal referral hospitals at Ahoada, Bori, Degema, Okehi and Omoku;
• renovate and revive the Professor Kelsy Harrison Hospital as well as the Dental and Maxillofacial Hospital;
• build a specialist hospital for the treatment of cancer, kidney and cardiovascular diseases; and;
• renovate dilapidated primary health centres across the State to enable them deliver primary healthcare to the people.
Security and public
92. The 2021 budget also prioritizes security and sustains the existing efforts in combating insecurity and keeping residents safe and secure.
93. We will continue to support the security agencies with the equipment and logistics they require to perform their duties to protect lives and property.
94. We will also continue to invest in strengthening the criminal justice system by ensure prompt and effective prosecution of criminal cases to enhance public peace and security,
95. We will also:
• restore the State’s Neighbourhood Safety Corps Agency;
• deliver a new Court House for the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt,
• Complete the judicial estate for judges of the National Industrial Court and the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt; and
• Complete the House of Assembly residential quarters.
96. Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, this is yet another moment in our history where we need to discharge our duties to deliver on our mandates. Government cannot effectively function and deliver results for our people without funds and consolidated disbursement plan.
97. The fiscal year 2021 Budget is our composite monetary plan to enable us continue to deliver our vision for building a new and prosperous Rivers State.
98. The budget is substantially balanced with ample incentives to stimulate economic growth, deliver socio-economic infrastructures and advance our collective progress.
99. It is on this note, Mr. Speaker that I present before you the fiscal year 2021 Budget of Rivers State for the consideration of this House.
100. Thank you, God bless you and God bless our dear Rivers State.