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JUST IN: Sanwo-Olu signs N1.768trn 2023 budget into law

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has signed the state’s N1.768 trillion budget for 2023, barely two months after the House of Assembly approved the appropriation bill for the year into law.

A breakdown of the budget signed into law by the governor showed that N748.096 billion was for recurrent expenditure and N1.019 trillion was allocated for capital expenditure for the year.

The budget signed into law was 76 million higher than the 2023 appropriation bill presented by the governor before the lawmaker for their approval.

Sanwo-Olu presented before the members of the State House of Assembly the total sum of N1,692,670,759,894 as the Lagos State 2023 Budget, but the lawmakers passed N1.768 trillion.

The Governor, who signed the bill into law on Friday at the State House in Ikeja, stated that the budget would aid the state to consolidate on development strides of his administration and satisfy the yearnings of the residents.

Sanwo-Olu said that the fiscal document not only focus on completing ongoing capital projects, it would also expand intervention programmes and intensify social support to citizens and their means of livelihood.

The governor said that the spending would further demonstrate his Government’s determination to scale up good governance and quality service to the citizens through the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda, stressing that the budget would propel the State to a higher level of financial growth and social development.

According to him, the implementation of the budget would see to completion of various ongoing capital projects, including the final construction phase of the 37-kilometre Lagos Red Rail Line from Agbado to Ebute Metta.

He added that the funding for the second phase of the Blue Line from Mile 2 to Okokomaiko had equally been approved in the budget, stressing that the Ojo General Hospital project and mental health facility in Ketu-Ereyun being undertaken by the State Government would race to completion.

Sanwo-Olu said the contractors handling various road and school construction projects in Badagry, Amuwo Odofin, Ikorodu, and Eti Osa could now have access to funds to deliver the projects.

He said: “I’m delighted to assent to the 2023 Appropriation Bill transmitted to me after it was passed by the House of Assembly. The budget went through a rigorous review and passed through all the relevant statutory channels required before we now have a live document that can be implemented. This is a budget that speaks to the aspirations and needs of Lagosians.

“The budget is audacious and its size is a reflection of the confidence our citizens repose in us. It is also a significant improvement in the discharge of the citizens’ civic responsibility in the areas of taxes and levies that are due to the Government. I give assurance of our commitment to prudent implementation and improvement in service delivery that will bring about more dividends of good governance.”

Sanwo-Olu expressed his appreciation to the leaders and members of the House of Assembly for the timely consideration and independent ratification assignment done on the document.

The Governor promised to raise the level of implementation of the Appropriation Law, pledging that the ongoing electioneering would not slow down governance process.

He said although Lagos had the highest budget among the federating units, he added that the budget size was a far cry from the actual number that should have been proposed which befits Lagos developmental aspiration.

Sanwo-Olu said that the State could do a lot more if the citizens would partner with the Government by committing to pay their taxes.

He said: “Lagosians must know that our Government is committing to protecting their lives and their means of livelihoods. We can provide a lot more opportunities for our citizens in transportation, education, public health, and other areas of human endeavours. To achieve these objectives, residents must see the real partner in us.

“We have seen the growth across the city and opportunities for business. Our budget must speak to this growth. Lagos needs to be in the comity of cities that can take opportunities to another level and ventilate its economic potential.”

Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Sam Egube, explained that the budgetary items reflected the wishes of the residents across the State’s five traditional divisions.

He said that the coatings were in alignment with long-term sector objectives and in agreement with Lagos State Development Plan.

Earlier, Chairman, House Appropriation Committee, Gbolahan Yishau, thanked the Governor for bringing an “implementable document” to the House, pointing out that the fiscal document was diligently reviewed before the final draft was approved.

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