By Patrick Obia
“Perhaps my State (Cross River) and others can replicate this.
“This is an investment in the State’s future”.
That’s the assertion of the Executive Secretary, Budget Transparency and Accountability Network (BITAN) Mr. Eworo Kingsley in reaction to the proposed 2020 budget of Kaduna State via twitter.
See twit below.
Perhaps my state & others can replicate this.
This is an investment in the State's future https://t.co/6ytlZ2QWN6
— kingsley Eworo (@KingsleyEworo) December 1, 2019
The Cross River State Governor, Sen. Ben Ayade recently presented the State proposed 2020 budget “Olimpotic Meristemasis” to the State Assembly.
Recently, Mr. Eworo and the Executive Director of Policy Alert, Mr. Tijah-Bolton Akpan, was a guest on The Dialogue With Agba Jalingo which airs Sundays 6-7pm on Hit 95.9fm Calabar and live streamed on its facebook page.
The both described the budgets of Olimpotic Meristemasis as “shrouded in secrecy and should be rooted on reality, not on spiritual force and things that do not exist”.
They called on citizens to engage their representatives to ensure the people benefit from the 2020 budget.
Mr. Tijah-Bolton said, “Budgeting is a very serious business. It has to do with what comes to the citizens at the end of the day, whether we are taking about roads, health care, education. Whether we are talking about food on the table; everything boils down to the budget, so, the big grammar is either here or there, what wants to see at the end of the day is how does this translate to value at my door steps and at that level, there is a whole lot of mismatch between the big grammar of the budget of the past five years and the actual human development reality at the door Steps of Cross River citizenry.
“While budget has to do with expectations, while budgets has to do with aspirations and even ambitions, budget also should be rooted in reality and once the budget begins to travel away from reality, it has become a budget of wild imagination and by the time you start doing that, you see the governance of the State; governance of that jurisdiction that budget is meant for it will no longer be rooted in the reality of the citizenry it is meant to serve and that I think is a challenge that Cross River State need to tackle ahead on. The House of Assembly remains in that position to tackle that challenge but unfortunately, it is at the feet of House of Assembly that the Governor deposited the budget of Olimpotic … what is that called again? So, whatever that means, the House of Assembly need to wake up to its duty of oversight, duty of legislation”.
Mr. Eworo said, “The budget as it is called, at some extent portrays His Excellency’s idea which is good will of course. Saying tricycle riders and taxi drivers should stop their daily payments or monthly levy, I think it is shrouded in secrecy. You don’t ask citizens not to pay tax reason being that you are taking away ownership of governance from them. Yes it is as good as it. Government should not run with emotions, Government should run with objectives. One of the reasons why citizens are meant to pay taxi is to generate revenue. Secondly, is for them to have the power to ask of for good governance”.
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