Monday, 6 January 2020

C'River Assembly passes Appropriation Bill – 2020

 By Itam Offor.

 The State House of Assembly has passed the State Budget Estimates and Appropriation Bill 2020 of 1.1 trillion into law at the Assembly complex in Calabar on Tuesday, 31st December, 2019.

The Appropriation bill was passed into law during plenary following the presentation of the report of the House Committee on Finance and Appropriation by its Chairman, Hon. Sunday Achunekang
In the report, Hon. Achunekang stated that "the Cross River budget and Appropriation bill 2020 which His Excellency christened Budget of Olympotic Meristemasis has a total income and expenditure estimate in the sum of #1,100,168,507,687.09"  adding that "the estimates have dropped from the 2019 approved budget by #48,363,126,573.91 representing 4.39 percent".

The Committee Chairman noted that though there had been complaints over a budget size of 1.1 trillion as proposed by the Governor for 2020, the committee "recommends that for the purpose of actualizing the projects and programmes envisaged by the State Government and the commitment it has shown in completing them, the 2020 budget of size #1,100,168,507,687.09 as proposed be adopted by the House".

According to the Committee Chairman, the budget of Olympotic Meristemasis holds the key to the economic transformation and wellbeing of the state adding that "it is a support base to the private sector, hope for the vulnerable, the poor, the homeless and hungry and a road map for the Cross River State Government".

The House which dissolved into the "Committee of the Whole" to consider the report hailed the Committee for painstakingly scrutinising the budget proposal an expeditiously interacting with the various MDAs during the budget process.

The Speaker of the House Rt. Hon. Eteng Jonah Williams commended Members for their commitment to the budget process which has resulted in the early passage of the bill, compliance to budgetary provisions by the various MDAs for the overall progress of the State.
He urged members not to relent in their oversight functions to ensure compliance to budgetary provisions by the various MDAs for the overall progress of the State.

Williams further directed the Clerk of the House to forward a clean copy of the bill to the Governor for his assent.