SPEECH BY HIS EXCELLENCY, SEN. BALA ABDULKADIR MOHAMMED, CON (KAURAN BAUCHI), THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF BAUCHI STATE ON THE OCCASION OF PRESENTATION OF THE YEAR 2023 BUDGET PROPOSAL TO THE BAUCHI STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY ON 16TH NOVEMBER 2022.
Your Excellency, the Deputy Governor,
Rt. Honourable Speaker, Bauchi State House of Assembly,
My Lords, the Chief Judge and Grand Khadi ,
Members of the National Assembly here present,
Honourable Members, Bauchi State House of Assembly,
Secretary to the State Government,
Members of the State Executive Council,
The State Chairman, PDP,
The Head of Civil Service,
The Chief of Staff Government House,
Chief Executives of Parastatals and Heads of Extra Ministerial Departments,
Local Government Chairmen,
Your Royal Highnesses,
Heads of Security Agencies,
Members of the State Executive Committee, PDP,
Distinguished Invited Guests,
Members of the Press Corps,
Ladies and Gentlemen.
Assalamu Alaikum Warahamatullahi Wa Barkatuhu .
2- With a deep sense of gratitude to Almighty Allah (SWT) for His mercies and continuous guidance, I stand before you here today on the occasion of the presentation of the 2023 Budget Estimates to this Honourable House. I wish to most sincerely thank the Right Honourable Speaker, Principal Officers and other Honourable Members of this House for their continuous support and commitment in our collective vision towards the development of our dear State.
3- This presentation marks the last in the life of the current tenure of this PDP-led administration. It has therefore become imperative for me to use this opportunity to, with a deep sense of utmost humility and gratitude, acknowledge the citizens of the State for their confidence in our abilities and assure them of our clear and unflinching commitment to continue to serve them with the fear of the Almighty Allah, unto whom we shall all return and give account of our stewardship.
4- Mr. Speaker, Honourable members, we have over the last three years steered the affairs of our State onto a trajectory of sustainable development and continuous progress which is manifested in the people-oriented, demand-driven projects and programs that we have implemented. Certainly, the limited time and space available here will be insufficient for me to give detailed account of our stewardship. I will however in the course of this presentation, attempt to provide details of some of the key projects and program that we have implemented.
REVIEW OF THE MACRO ECONOMIC ENVIRONMENT
5- Though the global economy had witnessed positive change coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic; the Russian – Ukrainian war has affected economic growth with disruptions in supply chain that has led to higher energy costs and inflation. The invasion has disrupted global energy markets andslowed down the global economy. The shock has led to a surge in prices across a broader set of energy- related commodities.
6- Model-based estimates suggest that war-driven surge in energy prices could reduce global output by 0.8 percent after two years. Experience had shown that oil price shocks provide an important catalyst for policies to encourage demand reduction, substitution to other fuels, and development of new sources of energy supply. In energy-importing economies, higher prices had reduced real disposable incomes, raised production costs, tightened financial conditions and constrained the policy space.
7- Coming home, the Nigerian economy grew faster in 2021 and recouped some of the growth losses from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, despite high oil prices arising from the Russian- Ukranian war, oil output declined by 8.3 percent and remained consistently below the country’s OPEC quotas. This consistent decline, which reached a two-decade low as of May 2022 ,stemmed from technical and security challenges in the oil-producing Niger Delta region, aging infrastructure and inadequate investment in the sector, and NNPC’s failure to remit into the FAAC Account.
8- The consequences of these negative developments had manifested in lower revenues accruing for distribution to the three tiers of government, thus limiting their ability to provide the required social services and programs.
9- Furthermore, the war has added significantly to Nigeria’s inflationary pressures. Headline inflation rate rose for eight straight months to 20.77 percent year-on-year in September 2022, from15.6 percent in January. This marks the highest point since 2005 which was largely caused by a weaker currency that raised costs of imported products. Food inflation increasedto23.34 percent during the same period, the highest since October 2005, amid supply disruptions caused by widespread flooding and higher costs of imports, especially higher wheat prices. As at April 2022 ,the price of wheat flour—used to produce bread, pasta, and other major Nigerian staples—had increased by36 percent year-on-year.
10- Core inflation, which excludes prices of volatile agricultural produce, increased to 17.6 percent in September 2022, arising from upward pressure from non-food products namely transportation caused by scarcity of petrol and other fuels, miscellaneous goods and services, as well as housing and utilities. The added inflationary pressure could push many more millions Nigerians into poverty.
11- The adverse consequences from the current geopolitical conflict are a reminder of the importance of global cooperation, security and stability. As countries contend with higher volatility, spending pressures from humanitarian response needs and tighter financial market conditions, the likelihood that some countries will become financially constrained increases. Multilateral institutions offer a critical safety net, providing emergency liquidity and preventing crises from spreading.
1 2- Conscious of the unfolding scenario within the global and national economies, the State had grappled with the obvious constraints of funding. Programs intended to improve the living conditions of the citizens had been introduced and implemented. Furthermore, measures aimed at improving the revenue capacities of government as well as strengthening its relationship with partners had yielded positive results with the attraction of key life changing interventions.
IMPLEMENTATION OF THE 2022 BUDGET
1 3. Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, the inability to meet projected revenue streams arising from decreasing oil production and rising inflationary conditions had affected the overall performance of the 2022 budget. Overall, we have only been able to achieve about 58.25% in the implementation of the budget as at 30 th September 2022. We have, however, within these constraints, prudently managed the limited resources available to a considerable degree of performance in meeting the required social services and demands.
a – For the Recurrent Revenue comprising Statutory and Independent Revenue sources; out of the sum of N109,561,369,098.00 projected; the sum of N70,336,699,449.00, representing about 64.2% was realized as at the end of the third quarter.
b — In terms of Capital Receipts; out of the N 72 ,026,293,537:00 projected, the sum of N 39,530,074,215:00 or 54.9% was achieved as at September, 2022.
C— For Recurrent Expenditure; N69 ,587,731,686.00 was incurred from the projected sum of N100,810,608,513.00 during the same period, representing a performance of 69%.
d -Related to Capital Expenditure performance; the sum of N45,100,798,725.00 was achieved from the budgeted sum of N96,664,998,630.00 , representing 46.7%.
1 4- We remain optimistic that our Budget implementation will attain a minimum of 85% at the end of the fiscal year with concrete measures put in place to improve on our internal revenue generation. Furthermore, the renewed confidence building in our relationships with our development partners is a pointer towards additional implementation of the bilateral and multilateral arrangements put in place.
OUR CUMMULATIVE SCORE-CARD
1 5 – The Right Honourable Speaker, Honourable Members, we have, over the last three years of this administration, remained committed working with the security agencies, towards maintaining social order, peace and security across the State, and will continue to take every step to ensure that the security of lives and property of the citizens is guaranteed. We remain grateful to Almighty Allah as the State remains acknowledged as one of the most peaceful in the country.
1 6- Mr. Speaker, Honorable members, we have consistently made commitments to make improvements in Agriculture, Education, Healthcare delivery, Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene and Housing Development, among many other Sectors. Infrastructure had, in fact, been at the centre of our developmental efforts, receiving considerable attention.
1 7- With a deep sense of modesty, I will make an attempt to highlight a few of the key achievements, among numerous others, that we have made, especially in the key sectors I have earlier highlighted.
1 8- In the Educational Sector, we have embarked on a program of action to improve on the physical infrastructure as well as the quality of teaching in our schools. In this regard, we have construct ed or r enovat ed classroom s in primary , junior and senior secondary schools and have procured and distribut ed furniture , and instructional materials in such schools.
1 9- In terms of manpower development, we have u p – grad ed over 200 principals and Vice Principals and promoted over 3,000 teachers. Furthermore, we have ensured the deployment of different digital technologies to successfully conduct large scale operations, including monitoring of staff punctuality, feeding of students in boarding schools, BECE examination, SSCE-sponsorship Aptitude Test, and Annual Schools Census.
20- Successes recorded in implementation include the remarkable improvement in public schools ’ performance achieved in WAEC, using 5-credits and above from 25% in 2018 to 37.5% in 2019, 65% in 2020 and 68% in 2021 . F or NECO , an improved performance of 70% and 72%, using the same yardstick, was achieved in 2020 and 2021 respectively. Additionally, the measures have led to a reduction of the out – of – school children figure including 282,000 achieved under the Better Education Service Delivery for All ( BESDA ) Project .
21 -I must also add here that we have, with the best of intentions within our peculiarities, introduced single gender schools to fight delinquency in urban secondary schools, improve on academic performance and restore confidence in public education for parents and the society at large. We will work with private educational operators to ensure the overall success of this policy.
22- The Health Sector has remained a key priority of the Government, with consistent budgetary allocations of at least 1 5 per cent of the state’s budget allocated to it over the last three years. Let me use this opportunity to remind us that the administration, in its earlier days, convoked a Bauchi State Health Summit , bringing together all health sector partners and stakeholders from across the State and indeed the nation, to analyse and offer advices on a trajectory to improve health indices in the state. The success of the Health Summit had eventually led to the design of a roadmap that has led to remarkable improvements in the sector.
23- The Government had, in response, embarked on the complete rehabilitation and re-equipping of a t least one General Hospital in each of the 20 L ocal G overnment A reas of the State aimed at extending quality healthcare services to the doorsteps of the people. In collaboration with our development partners , the Administration has successfully renovated and equipped over 300 PHC facilities across the state. The goal is to ensure that each of the 323 electoral wards in the state is equipped with at least one functional PHC centre so that every resident of Bauchi State can access healthcare delivery within a very short time and distance .
24- Furthermore, i n recognition of the fact that effective healthcare delivery is a function of the availability of appropriate and adequate manpower, Government has introduced highly competitive welfare packages for doctors, pharmacists, nurses and indeed all healthcare workers in the services of the state in order to address the gross in – balance in the doctor-patient ratio, a factor that has had adverse effect on healthcare delivery in the state.
25- The Government had, in that respect, recruit ed 100 Medical Doctors and over One thousand One Hundred and Sixty-Five medical-related personnel, mostly State indigenes .
26 – Let me also emphasise here that we have remained committed to our obligations in our relationship with our partners. The Government had consistently injected an average of N3 50 million annually from 2019 into the Primary Health Care MoU basket fund , established under a quadripartite arrangement with Dangote Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF and USAID , as the state counterpart funding to support the Primary Health Care integration process. Th is co llaborat ion had worked out on strengthening key PHC services ; routine Immunizations ; maternal, newborn and child health ; skilled birth delivery ; emergency response ; monitoring and evaluation programs and data tracking ; as well as information management.
27- Th e effort s made by the state in this direction had attract ed a lot of support from diverse stakeholders like World Bank, EU and UNICEF, USAID , Global Affairs Canada, and other multilateral agencies. Recent continuous visits by such major partners to the State is a clear indication of the strength of such relationships and the level of confidence reposed in our abilities.
28- It should further be noted that the Government ha d launched the Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) Drug Revolving Fund (DRF) in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), under the Global Health Supply Chain-Procurement and Supply Management project. The partnership had targeted sustainable funding to procure and distribute malaria drugs and maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) commodities in the state. Basic Health Care Provision Fund a s one of the components, had focused on supply and demand-side investments for Primary Health Care and had helped to ensure more equitable and efficient health care financing aimed at provid ing essential services to the most vulnerable.
29- Similarly , in its Vulnerable Program , the Bauchi State Health Contributory Management Agency (BASHCMA) ha d enrolled 44,250 beneficiaries for the purpose of accessing free medical services to be paid from the Basic Health Care Provision Fund.
30- In terms of infrastructure, we have embarked on massive development of urban and rural roads to open up the State’s economy and create a conducive environment for citizens to have access to education, healthcare and other essential services. Under the Bauchi Urban Renewal and the rural roads development projects, Government had constructed or is constructing roads that have linked up our communities with their sources of livelihoods and reduced the dangers of accidents.
31- These include the completion of CBN Round – about to Railway Round – about in Bauchi ; c onstruction of Jama’are Road and r ehabilitation of Sule Katagum Road in Azare ;construction of some selected Roads in Bauchi including T afawa B alewa H ousing Estate, Ibrahim Bako Estate, ATAP and ATBU Gubi Campus ; c onstruction / r ehabilitation of Awalah Roundabout – Gidan Mai – Zaranda – Miri Road ; c onstruction of Gombe – Maiduguri Roads Bye – pass, Yakubun Bauchi Quarters Road and Sultan Abubakar ( Muda Lawal Market) Road in Bauchi Metropolis ;and the c onstruction of Sabon Kaura – Jos Road and Sabon Kaura – Tambari Estate Road in Bauchi Metropolis .
32- Others include the c onstruction of Bununu Township Roads ; c onstruction of Disina Township Road and Flood Control Drainages ; c onstruction / d ualization / r ehabilitation of Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa International Airport Road, Maiduguri Road, Sam Njoma Road, Adamu Jumba Road, Yakubu Wanka Road, Jaja Road, Bata- Nufawa – Anguwan Jaki Road, Sarkin Kasuwa Road, Shagari Road and Karofin Madaki Road all in Bauchi Metropolis ; c onstruction of Gwangwangwan-Bakaro-Kofar Dumi Road and Mallam Goje – Bakin Kura – Muda Lawal (Urban Market) Road in Bauchi Metropolis ; and the r ehabilitation of 1.5km Emir’s Palace – Marshal Road – CLIS Junction in Misau .
3 3- Major intra-state roads that Government ha d embarked upon include Misau – Bulkachuwa – Udubo -Gamawa, Sade – Akuyam , Yelwan Duguri-Kumbala-Kundak-Burga , Katanga Warji – Gwaram , Itas – Gadau , Azare- Isawa – Giade – Kurba – Basirka , Bogoro – Lusa , Boi – Tapshin , Rimin Zayam – Polchi – Palama , Rishi – Tulu – Tama andMelandige – Kafin Larabawa / Madangala – Kujuru roads.
34- Going to the Water Sector, we must note the adage that ‘’Water is life’’, because every human existence depends on the availability of water in the required volume. However, due to increasing human activities and climatic change, availability of water for human consumption had been a major recuring problem. In the major cities, unavailability is best described in relation to population growth and neglect of the sources and processes of water supply. At the advent of this administration, the situation of water supply in Bauchi metropolis and other urban centres was at best abysmal.
35- The National Urban Water Sector Project, a World Bank supported initiative conceived to resolve the perennial water shortage, was not been implemented on time and thus required the political will and muscle. We are pleased to note that we have completed the project, the major components of which include the rehabilitation of the Gubi Dam, rehabilitation and expansion of the Gubi Water Treatment Plant, and replacement of transmission mains from the Dam to Warinje and Buzaye reservoirs. We give glory to the almighty Allah as our efforts have been crowned with the commissioning of the project by the President earlier in the year.
36- We have in addition, also embarked on the rehabilitation and improvement of other major water supply schemes across the State.
37- In the area of agriculture, the Government has kept faith with its pledge to fast-track agricultural revolution in the state. The intention here is to ensure food security, job creation and attracti on of private investments targeting and developing high potential value chains in Rice, Sesame, Sorghum , Groundnuts, and Ruminants production . We have also Improved access to inputs by restructuring and reviving the Bauchi Fertilizer Blending Company and the Bauchi State Agricultural Supply Company and are engaging private sector participation in the supply of quality inputs and farming implements.
38- Additionally, we had engaged in an a mbitious program to expand the number of Extension Service Workers from the less than 15 we inherited to, at least 2000 highly trained hands. This is steadily progressing. We have also trained a considerable number of youths in modern agricultural production.
39- These efforts are aimed at enhancing crop and livestock productivity through the introduction of smart crops, improved high-yield crops and modern livestock production. We are currently engaged with the Federal Government towards the implementation of the National Livestock Transformation Plan and other World Bank supported interventions in view of the vast arable land and large population of cattle, sheep, goats and poultry the State is endowed with.
40- Efforts are been made to revamp the Galambi Cattle Ranch , Gub i and Madangala Dairy Farms, the Bauchi Meat Products Company and other moribund industries through a n effective private sector intervention strategy in order to provide the required agro-processing value addition and create high-paying jobs and the associated multiplier effects for our teeming youths.
41- I am indeed delighted to note the r ecent breakthrough with a private entrepreneur resulting in the invest ment of more than N5 billion towards the establishment of a rice processing mill with the capacity to produce 600 tonnes of rice. This will greatly boost the processing of paddy and long grain rice ; create an opportunity for the employment of our teeming youths; and create an opportunity for enhanced commercial activities around the mill.
42- In the Housing Sector, in order t o cater for the needs of its population, Government had c o me up with an ambitious plan for the provision of affordable housing . A massive Housing Project embarked upon by the Government in collaboration with Family Home s Fund, a subsidiary of the Federal Ministry of Finance had resulted in the construction of 2,500 Housing units of 3 and 2 bedrooms in Bauchi , Azare , Misau , Ningi , Dass and Jama’are . Government will continue to partner with will private sector investors under a Public-Private-Partnership arrangement to develop more houses.
43- One major project in development is the 3-Arms zone that will emerge from the old Bauchi Airport. When completed, this ultra-modern estate development will provide official residences for Legislators, Judicial officers and executive council members. Besides, the proposed real estate development will give the state capital, a befitting architectural and aesthetic look.
44- Conscious of the need to provide the State with a befitting administrative base, we have embarked on a massive project aimed at improving the seat of Government that had basically remained the same since the creation of the State with minimal improvements. Efforts made by previous Governments had not gone beyond the conceptualization stage despite huge expenditures made.
45- Our plan is to bequeath to the State a befitting Government House with supporting structures that provide any administration with the enabling environment to concentrate on an effective act of governance. I must add that we have reconstructed the Government Lodges in Abuja from a very sorry state to the best any State can offer.
46- Furthermore, the State Secretariat Complex had undergone major improvements with plans to complete necessary structures including the auditorium that had been abandoned years back. Other infrastructure including the provision of roads and security fencing have also been lined up for provision in the immediate short term. I must also add that similar gestures had been extended to Local Government administration to ensure effective service delivery by the total rehabilitation of all the 20 Local Government Secretariats, the first major renovation in decades.
47- It is further worthy of mention that we have rolled out the implementation of the Nigeria-Cares Programme; an interventionist measure initiated with the World Bank aimed at improving the lives of our people from the crutches of poverty, economic losses and deprivation exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
48- The programme is, through a number of implementing platforms, providing social infrastructure service micro projects; delivering inputs and services to farmers; investing in various types of agricultural assets and infrastructure; improving food supply chains; and supporting programmes that increase employment, provide livelihood grants and social transfers to the vulnerable groups. Furthermore, the project provides quick financial intermediation to needed enterprises in order to promote and facilitate household micro and small enterprises among others.
49- We have, to this end, so far given out business support grants of N100,000 each to over 2,000 SME beneficiaries to recover and sustain their operations; livelihood grants of N100,000 each to over 2,000 economically active and unemployed youths and women; monthly grants of N10,000 each given bi-monthly to over 3,305 beneficiaries to enhance consumption support under the cash transfer platform for the last 3 months and going; and engaged 936 youths under the labour intensive public works to make them work on feeder roads, irrigation schemes, reforestation, security and sanitation services with payment of N13,000 monthly, which commenced three months ago.
50- Additionally, we have embarked on the provision of community based social infrastructure in water, health, education and nutrition to 30 communities at an average cost of between N11 million to 15million. The constructions have reached significant stages of completion. The project had also aimed at Increasing food security and safe functioning of food supply chains with a view to reach up to 10,000 farmers through the provision of agricultural inputs and services, agricultural assets for production and upgrade of wet markets estimated at a total cost in excess of N650million.
51- These interventions have gone a long way to support our other efforts in the development of small and medium businesses as well as our local businessmen and artisans. A total sum of N300million has so far been provided and disbursed under the Government’s support to traders, artisans and other local business operators with plans for the disbursement of the second tranche of N300million almost concluded.
52- This is in addition to other support provided including the Kaura Economic Empowerment Programme that has provided succour to our youth, women and the vulnerable through the provision of capital; work equipments, machinery and implements; and the likes to fully engage them and provide sustainable livelihoods in various trades and vocations. Our investments in this regard across all the Local Government Areas is far in excess of N2.5billion. The last in the series had only most recently been launched in Bauchi Local Government.
53- In view of the enormous successes achieved in SMEs development over the last three years, I have directed the responsible agencies of Government to improve on the enabling business processes in order to create an environment that supports and promotes the development of sustainable SMEs as a critical step in building our economy. We will sustain and improve on our ranking as the sixth in the World Bank ranking and fourth in the 2021 sub-national Ease of Doing Business ranking in the country.
54- The Right Honourable Speaker, Honorable Members; I could go on and on to reel out our achievements but for the constraint of time and the fact that this event is only a budget presentation session. I am most proud and modest, however, to say that our development strategy had been all encompassing, touching all aspects of our society’s needs. We will, Insha Allah, consolidate on such gains and build up on them as we move on to the next stage of our efforts after the general elections. I thank the citizens for the continuous support and pledge to give much more towards the development of the State.
THE 2023 BUDGET
55 -Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, the year 2023 budget which I tag “ BUDGET OF ACCOMPLISHMENT & RENEWED COMMITMENT ”’ is prepared based on the Medium -Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) in compliance with Bauchi State Fiscal Responsibility Law (2009) and the National Format and Chart of Accounts, to improve the quality of financial reporting in line with the International Public-Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS).
56- Mr Speaker, Honourable Members, the 2023 Budget has been predicated on the assumptions of oil production of 1.5 million barrels per day ; bench mark oil price of 70 US dollars per barrel ; an exchange rate of N435 to the US dollar and an improved and efficient system of internally generated revenue collection. Government has in the course of the preparation of the 2023 Budget taken the following measures into consideration: –
a – Ensure the completion of on-going projects only.
b – Propose new projects only on the basis of critical need and the immediate impact it would make.
c – Ensure reduction in non-essential overheads.
d – Ensure compliance with Budget guidelines issued by the Nigerian Governors Forum to ensure peer review and comparability.
e – The projections for revenue items, especially from the federation account were conservatively arrived at from the arrays of forecasting options.
f – Compliance with debt servicing and repayment agreements in fulfilment of our obligations.
g – Target favourable sources of Capital Receipts and financing such as Aids and Grants, PPPs etc.
2023 PROJECTED REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE
57- The sum of N202,641,558,614.46 has been Budgeted for Capital and Recurrent services during the 2023 fiscal year. This comprises of Recurrent Expenditure of N 87 , 923,2 42,963.50 or 43 % while Capital Expenditure receives the sum of N 11 4 ,718 ,515,650.97 or 57%.
58 – The 2023 proposed Budget is about 2.6% higher than that of 2022. The increase could be attributable to rising inflationary trends that aligns our projections with the current economic realities. This conservative approach was adopted to ensure that projects and programmes captured are appropriately costed to ensure implementation.
59- Mr Speaker, Honourable members, the process of the preparation of the budget has been all inclusive. Budget Public Hearings were conducted in the three Senatorial Districts, where inputs from Stakeholders were elicited and incorporated into the Budget.
(A) RECURRENT ESTIMATES
(a) Recurrent Revenue Estimates
The sum of N125 ,466,076,852.47 is estimated as Recurrent Revenue. This is made up of the following:
— Internally Generated Revenue= N22,568,112,131.06
—Statutory Allocation= N61,909,072,252.01
(b) Recurrent Expenditure Estimates
A total sum of N 87,923, 242,963.50 is earmarked for Recurrent Expenditure. The breakdown as follows:-
a- Personnel Cost= N41,547,569,858.12
b – Overhead Cost= N46,375,673,105.38
(B) CAPITAL RECEIPTS
It is projected that the State will realize Capital Receipts in the sum of N 67 ,177,732,036.99 in the following areas:
a— Loans (Internal & External)= N17,665,944,260.00
b—Aids and Grants= N10,884,249,026.99
c—Other Capital Receipts= N38,627,538,750.00
(C) CAPITAL EXPENDITURE:
Capital Expenditure has been proposed in the sum of N 114,718 ,3 15,650.97 in the following sectors
a-ADMINISTRATIVE SECTOR N8,722,537,961.80
b — ECONOMIC SECTOR N58,249,572,675.40
C—LAW AND JUSTICE SECTOR N1,837,950,000.00
d – REGIONAL SECTOR
e – SOCIAL SECTOR N34,633,470,575.86
60– In concluding this presentation, I want to solicit the continuous support and cooperation of this Honourable House as usual in our efforts towards the development of our dear State and in improving the lives of its citizens. We have no doubt made significant progress in that respect.
61- As we go into the process of electioneering, I want to use this opportunity to urge our citizens to make the right judgment in exercising their franchise.The peace, security and rights of others to express their will is guaranteed under the Constitution and must be allowed to work. The ultimate choice will, indeed, be the choice of the Almighty Allah in Whom we absolutely trust.
62- Finally, Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, I wish to appreciate your rapt attention to the presentation of the 2023 Budget proposals. Iwish to appeal to the Honourable House to expedite action towards passing the Budget into law to enable Government implement the programmes and projects that will have significant impact on our people.
63– Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I wish to thank all those that are here with us to witness the presentation of this Budget. I most specially acknowledge our royal fathers, statesmen, leadership of our great party the PDP, our citizens, and other leaders here present.
64- Thank you and God Bless you all, Ameen .
Released from the office of Special Adviser Media and Publicity to the Governor