Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba has said that the mandate to return the country to the January-December budget cycle represented a great stride towards institutionalising predictions about the economic direction of Nigeria.
Agba said that the new budget cycle would also bolster the confidence of investors and development partners in Nigeria’s economy with concomitant growth and development.
In his closing remarks yesterday, October 14, after the breakdown session on the 2020 budget proposals in Abuja, the minister assured Nigerians that the 2020 budget would sustain growth and galvanise job creation.
He expressed confidence that with the continuous support for President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration: “we will surmount the challenges to the attainment of the country’s God-given destiny as a nation.”
He said that there is a need to create a brand new paradigm in the management of the national economy through proper planning, stressing that to pass the final litmus test, the country’s new push, coming on the heels of the President’s commitment to take 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years, will be accountable and inclusive.
He said that the 2021 budgetary process would commence early so as to ensure more engagements and achieve robust contributions in order to have a better budget for the country.
According to Agba, a team has been set up in the Ministry to look at the next successor plan to the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) and the Vision 2020, which would both come to an end in December next year.
He noted that the current budget is a derivative of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), pointing out: “our focus is on the priority areas.”
On Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit, the Minister said that revenues generated in the past were not effectively used, resulting in the huge deficit gap that existed and was evident in all sectors of the economy.
Permanent Secretary (Special Duties) in the Ministry of Finance, Dr. Mohammed Kyari Dikwa, expressed optimism that the 2020 budget, when passed, would lead to sustained growth and job creation.
He urged all the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to implement the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) scheme in their various institutions.