New Minimum Wage Captured in 2019 Budget – Finance CommissionerFriday, May 10th, 2019 | News
The State Commissioner of Finance, Mr. Nsikan Linus Nkan, has re-affirmed the State government’s readiness to implement the new minimum wage of N30,000.00, assuring that it has already been included in the 2019 Budget.
The Commissioner, who was speaking in Uyo, while analyzing the 2019 State Budget to stakeholders and a cross section of Akwa Ibom citizens, said explained that the new minimum wage having been deliberated upon and approved by the National Assembly, even before its assent into law, the State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, had given directive for its inclusion in the overhead cost of the recurrent expenditure component of the 2019 budget.
He averred that Governor Emmanuel has showed sincerity of purpose in his administration and is poised to generate policies and programs that are people-centered to enhanced the living standards of the people, in line with the cardinal objective of his government.
On the 2019 Budget christened, Budget of Industrialization for poverty Alleviation, Commissioner Nkan said the budget was aimed at actualizing the economic power base of the State through industrialization and and sustainable private-public sector initiative that would open up opportunities for wealth generation, employment and generally advance the economy.
The Commissioner went further to through more light on the budget implementation strategies to include, the expansion of revenue base of the State through the elimination of wastage and leakages in expenditure, improved internally generated revenue collections through the development of the State’s tourism potentials, attract potential investors and donor Agencies to relevant and key sectors of the State’s economy, strengthen the industrial base of the State through development of a Mega Industrial City “Liberty Free Trade Zone and 2 Mini-Akees Industrial parks, which would provide a conducive environment for rapid industrialization, develop Ibom Industrial City, Security, as well as the free and compulsory education.
Other plans according to him are ,the completion of all on-going projects in the key sectors of the State economy, Agriculture and Agro-allied industries for food sufficiency, export, and raw materials, expansion and improvements of services in Health Care Delivery, provision of educational facilities with emphasis on science and technology, as well as enforce child protection laws and empower women and youths through capacity building, empowerment, skill acquisition and elimination of gender discrimination practices, etc.
Breaking down the budget, the Commissioner stated that of the budget size of N672,984,760 billion, capital expenditure takes N447,902,796,449, while recurrent expenditure is N225,081,964,320.
The sectorial highlights show that Economy got the lion’s share of N432,644,189,55 Billion, or 65.2%; Administration, N127,108,684,760 Billion or 18.9%; while Social was allotted N88.58,068,150 Billion or 13%. Others are Law and Justice N15,882,654,320 or 2.3%, and Regional N2,768,163,980 Billion or 0.3%.
Earlier, while setting the tone for the event, the Head of State Budget Office, Mr. Otu Asuquo, stated that the budget preparation was in line with global best practices, and that the State government had adopted the principle of International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) in its preparations.
Mr. Asuquo encouraged stakeholders to take advantage of the platform to be well informed on the underlying theory of the budget as well as the sectorial allocations to the budgetary components.
Also speaking, the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Committee Chairman on Appropriation and Finance, and member representing Esit Eket/Ibeno State Constituency, Dr.Usoroh Akpausoh while lauding the Ministry of Finance for putting up the event, commended the State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel for his sterling leadership qualities as witnessed in fiscal transparency , accountability, and prudence in the management of the State’s funds since the inception of his administration in 2015.
Dr. Akpausoh also scored the Internal Revenue Service high in revenue collections, and harped on the need for Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government not to carry out transactions with companies which are not registered as Limited Liability Companies to ensure that taxes accrue go to the State government.
On his part, the Commissioner for Economic Development, Labour and Manpower Planning, Rt. Hon. Ekong Sampson described the event as a clear demonstration of the transparency that signposts Governor Udom Emmanuel’s administration, noting that the budget process has been democratized for the common good of Akwa Ibom people.
While expressing the State government’s commitment to building a strong and vibrant economy, Ekong Sampson assured of his Ministry’s preparedness to effectively implement the 2019 Budget, thanking the Legislative arm of government for their support and cooperation with the Executive arm.
Goodwill messages were presented by the Special Assistant to the Governor on Budget, Pastor Nicholas Ekarika; Chairman, Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Elder Sunny James; and the Clan Head of Oku, Uyo, Etebom (Dr) Enefiok Okpon.
Also in attendance were the State Chief Judge, represented by the Chief Registrar, State Judiciary, Chief Magistrate Nkereuwem Obot, Commissioner for Lands and Town Planning, Arch Ime Ekpo, Commissioner for Housing, Hon. Raphael Bassey, Chairman, State Primary Health Care Delivery Agency, Dr. Martin Akpan, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mrs. Eme-ete Imuk, other Permanent Secretaries, and Heads of Extra-ministerial Departments, including the State Accountant-General, Pastor Uwem-Essien, State Auditor-General, Dr. Monday Akpan members of the State Finance sector team and senior Civil Servants.
Others were traditional rulers, professional bodies, socio-cultural groups, including Mboho Mkparawa Ibibio,Nto Afe Annang, heads of financial institutions, traders associations, amongst others.