By Izuchukwu Adichie
Inspite of the challenges Chukwuma Soludo’s administration inherited, some of which include: a red treasury and prevalent insecurity largely caused by criminals; the Governor has been on his ten toes, wirelessly putting things in place to drive forward the journey ahead. He has demonstrated that his government is poised to kick-start the implementation of Soludo Solution Agenda as swiftly as possible.
Rightly, the government understands the weight of the mandate and the expectations, defined as high, of which ndi-Anambra can’t wait to feel, see, and touch. And these expectations and turn around, the foreseen developmental impact are expected within the shortest time.
Moreso, Governor Soludo knows that the critical reason why ndi-Anambra ‘employed’ him was to put “Solution Smiles” on the faces of those not smiling. On Thursday, May 19, 2022, the Governor presented his first budget which he tagged; “taking off from the blocks”. It is a revised state 2022 budget proposal which he had presented to the Anambra State House of Assembly for consideration and approval.
The revised budget size is about N170 billion versus the existing appropriation of N142 billion (with the capital expenditure accounting for 64% compared to 57% previously). Capital expenditure increased by 33% from N81 billion to N108 billion while Recurrent expenditure increased marginally by 0.79% from N60 billion.
Soludo’s decision to revise the 2022 budget is to reflect current realities, challenges and priorities of his administration, and demands of ndi-Anambra. With a bleeding treasury, funding the audacious budget can be very challenging especially in this economic times. But this is why his core competence as a development/monetary/macro economist and a central banker will come handy and would be critical for the economic growth and emancipation of Anambra state.
Leveraging his professional experience, he has quickly put out modalities in reforming the state’s revenue collections to significantly ramp up internally generated revenue over the coming years. Again, there are other options for the funding of the budget.
Soludo’s revised budget has priorities security, roads and traffic management, health, education, Everything technology and youth empowerment, local government reform and, leisure and entertainment. While about 31% of the total budget is allocated to the Ministry of Works and Infrastructures, security budget has remained unchanged as his administration will count on off budget resources from donations to augment.
As promised, Governor Chukwuma Soludo has hit the ground running, as a man in a hurry to make a difference. He is seeking all-inclusive partnership in his administration, targeted at mobilizing investors and project developers thereby connecting them to the limitless opportunities in Anambra with a goal towards accelerating the state into a megacity where people can live happily, work happily, learn happily, invest happily and enjoy happily.
….the solution is here! He counts on you!