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Akwa Ibom Assembly passes N673 b 2019 budget into law

Akwa Ibom Assembly passes N673 b 2019 budget into law

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Joe Effiong, Uyo

The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly has passed the 2019 appropriation bill christened The Budget of Industrialization and Poverty Alleviation, into law.

The revised 2019 budget has been increased by more than N2 billion from the initial N670.18billion submitted to the House by Governor Udom Emmanuel last November to now bring a total outlay to  N672,984,760,760 with N447,902,796,440 earmarked for capital expenditure, N97,395,624,590 for recurrent expenditure and N127,686,339,730 for consolidated revenue fund charges.

The House on Wednesday also finally passed into law the Akwa Ibom Youth Development Fund bill.

The Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Mr Onofiok Luke while commenting on the Youth Development Fund Bill, said its passage into law was in line with the assembly’s commitment to youth development

The bill which was proposed by youth groups including the Youth Alive Foundation, and has Mr Emmanuel Ekpenyong who represents Ini State constituency in the House, as lead-sponsor, is seeking the implementation of a sustainable youth policy framework in the state.

Luke said the bill “proposes the establishment of the Akwa Ibom Youth Development Fund which ultimate aim is to create jobs and evolve greater opportunities for our teeming youths.”

He commended the Youth Alive Foundation and other youth organizations for proposing the bill while urging Akwa Ibom people to take similar advantage of the legislature to propose laws that can positively affect the generality of Akwa Ibom people.

Speaking after passing into law of the budget, Luke said the state’s 2019 budget was an economic transition proposal which will support the completion agenda of the Governor Udom Emmanuel administration.

According to him, the inputs by the people during the public hearing inspired need-based augmentations especially in the social sector.

“Our overall objective was to see to it that priority was given to areas of immediate importance to the people while we pursue the larger goal of full-scale industrialisation.

The House also ratified the Auditor General Report on the state Audited Account for 2017 in line with the provisions of Section 125 (5) (6) of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

Luke said the House, having thoroughly considered the expenditures of government as captured in the report, decided to put a legislative seal on the state audited account for 2017.

He noted that by the approval, the Assembly had “expressed the satisfaction of our various constituents with the fiscal health of this administration.

He said that the House would be looking forward to auditing the state account for 2018 before the expiration of the assembly in June, 2019.

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