To mitigate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic , the Ondo Government has earmarked N995, 400, 000 to check famine and boost food security in the state.
The Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Emmanuel Igbasan, made the disclosure yesterday in Akure during the analysis of the 2021 Appropriation Act tagged, “Budget of Hope.”
He revealed that it was part of the Ministry of Agriculture’s contribution to the COVID-19 Action and Economic Stimulus to sustain livelihoods through the FADAMA programme.
Igbasan noted that the N174.873 billion financial document has N79.084 billion as recurrent expenditure, a 5.4 per cent increase over the N75.022 billion figure of 2020.
“The economic and social sectors have highest allocations in the 2021 budget. This is understandable, as they are to stimulate the entire economy of the state,” he said.
The commissioner added that the sectors would also create jobs for the teeming unemployed youths and tend the less-privileged persons in the society through social inclusion programmes (SIPs).
He pegged the capital expenditure at N69.915 billion, a 40 per cent of the total budget, with 25 key projects for execution in all of the state’s 18 councils this year.
A further breakdown showed that the economic sector with a lion’s share of N87.5 billion (50.1 per cent) is followed by social sector with N58.2 billion, representing 33.3 per cent, and administration sector’s N19.6 billion (11.3 per cent).
According to him, regional sector has N4.6 billion (2.6 per cent), while N10.9 billion of the recurrent expenditure would be used to settle pensions and gratuities of pensioners, as well as benefits of past governors and their deputies.
Igbasan submitted that infrastructure, education, public finance and health have votes of N37 billion, N33.5 billion N24.6 billion and N17.9 billion.
He said N11.6 billion was going for rehabilitation and construction of state highways.
“The main focus of the 2021 budget is to boost human capital and economic development, as well as expand the fiscal space and entrench good governance,” the commissioner stated.