By Yinusa Ishola, Ado-Ekiti.
Gov. Biodun Oyebanji of Ekiti State on Friday in Ado-Ekiti signed the state’s N113.6 billion 2023 budget into law.
Speaking after signing the budget, Oyebanji commended members of the House of Assembly for promoting robust and harmonious relationship between the Legislative and the Executive arms of government.
The budget is christened: “Budget of Strong Beginning”.
The governor expressed gratitude to the legislature for its cohesiveness and for passing the 2023 Appropriation Bill in record time.
Oyebanji noted that his first fiscal document was carefully crafted, after due consultations with stakeholders, to lay a solid foundation for his administration and achieve the desired prosperity for the people.
The governor recalled that he presented the bill to the Assembly on Nov. 3, to give members sufficient time to scrutinise the document and engage all stakeholders.
“This is in a bid to abide with the Fiscal Sustainability Plan that ample time should be allowed for legislative processing of annual appropriation bills,’’ he said.
Oyebanji reiterated the vision of his administration to make Ekiti a land of prosperity, peace and progress, where the people could reap the fruits of their labour in dignity, in good health and in safety.
He thanked the Nigeria Governors’ Forum for providing technical support for the state in developing the National Charter of Accounts template to be used in the publication of the 2023 budget.
He assured that the template would be replicated in all ministries, departments and agencies of the state government to equip officers with budget implementation strategies.
The governor said the budget was designed to lay a strong foundation for his administration by leveraging the achievements of the preceding administration.
He said that the signing of the Appropriation Bill into law was the administration’s affirmation of its readiness to ensure fiscal discipline and effective budget implementation.
The governor reaffirmed the commitment of his administration to collaborate with development partners and donor agencies in the drive to hasten development in the state.
Oyebanji said: “It is my pleasure to be in your midst today to sign into law the 2023 ‘Budget of Strong Beginning’, in fulfilment of my constitutional obligations as governor of Ekiti.
“I count it a rare privilege to serve the good people of Ekiti in this capacity at this auspicious time.
“The Year 2023 budget, which is the first fiscal document of our administration has been carefully crafted after due consultations with all relevant stakeholders to lay a solid foundation for our administration.’’
Earlier, Speaker of the House of Assembly, Mrs Bunmi Adelugba, commended the governor for making the budget process people-driven, as recommended by the State Fiscal Transparency Accountability and Sustainable Programme.
She urged the governor to ensure proper implementation of the budget and prayed for a robust economy that would assist the administration to achieve successes.
Adelugba also assured the governor of the unflinching support of the Assembly in efforts to make the desired impact on the lives of the people.
The ceremony was witnessed by the Deputy Governor, Chief Monisade Afuye, Deputy Speaker of the House, Mr Hakeem Jamiu, members of the House of Assembly and senior government officials.