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Emmanuel unveils poverty alleviation programmes, proposes N697b budget

By Ayoyinka Jegede, Uyo
09 November 2022   |   3:36 am
Akwa Ibom State Government will place premium on social investment and poverty alleviation programmes in the next fiscal year.

[FILES] Udom. Photo/FACEBOOK//MrUdomEmmanuel

Akwa Ibom State Government will place premium on social investment and poverty alleviation programmes in the next fiscal year.

This was disclosed, on Monday, by Governor Udom Emmanuel while laying the 2023 budget before the House of Assembly.

Under the empowerment scheme, which is targeted at improving the well-being of the citizenry, a 12-month Social Transfer Scheme that would capture 1,950 beneficiaries will see each beneficiary receiving ₦10,000 monthly, while under the Labour-Intensive Public Workfare Scheme, additional 1,560 indigenes are to be engaged to perform menial works with a monthly stipend of ₦10,000 each.

Another empowerment scheme tagged ‘’Livelihood Grant Scheme’’ will capture 975 indigenes for short livelihood support to be accompanied with soft skills training and one off–payment, not less than ₦190,000 each, targeted at self-employed youths of the state.

Under the Foods Availability Scheme, about 6,964 farmers in the state will be provided with modern agricultural inputs and services.

The governor hinted further that additional 5,735 farmers in the state are to access improved agricultural infrastructure such as construction or rehabilitation of canals, roads and warehouses, while 8,125 farmers will access agric assets to step up agricultural production and small-scale food processing.

For Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Scheme, about 14,000 SMEs in the state will be captured for a grant between ₦100,000 and ₦150,000 to ‘incentivise’ employment retention.

MEANWHILE, the total budgetary outlay for the 2023 fiscal year, which is pegged at N697.005 billion, has a recurrent expenditure proposal of N344.005 billion, while capital expenditure stands at N353,000 billion.

According to the governor, the policy thrust of the 2023 budget is on consolidating the gains of the eight-point completion agenda of the government, which include industrialisation, education, aviation development, rural and riverine area development, agriculture, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises, infrastructure expansion and consolidation, security and human capacity development.

This, according to the governor, is to ensure inclusiveness in terms of employment, wealth creation, safe and habitable environment, productive welfare packages for the indigenes and improved service delivery in all aspects of government activities.

He said the strategies for realising the objectives include: partnering foreign investors in relevant sectors of the state economy and robust human capital development; widening the industrial base of the state, thereby enhancing the availability of goods and services for domestic consumption; enhancing delivery of qualitative and prompt service by public servants through automation and effective intra and inter MDAs collaboration; and improving fiscal transparency and accountability in all MDAs with emphasis on cost effectiveness in all programmes and projects of government, among others.