The Kaduna State Government has reiterated its determination to no longer rely on federal allocations for funding of its annual budgets.
The Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Mohammed Abdullahi, said this in his remarks at a public hearing on the 2022 appropriation bill at the Kaduna State House of Assembly on Tuesday.
”In the next few years, Kaduna should provide for infrastructure and other obligations with its own money so that whatever comes from the federal allocation will be an addition,” the commissioner said.
Mr Abdullahi said the state government has raised its tax collections to about N57 billion ”through hard work and partnership with the state House of Assembly”.
“In 2015 when this government came in, the highest that had been achieved was N13 billion annually and we are very happy today that we are at N57 billion because of the continued support of the State House of Assembly. The first law that was passed was the consolidated law, which was what opened the doors for rising internal revenue generation by the state,” he said.
“The state government relies only on about 31 per cent (budget) of federal allocation while some other states rely on 70-80 per cent from federal allocation.”
Mr Abdullahi said the administration of Governor Nasir El-Rufai has moved the state from complete reliance on federal allocation to one that is sustainable.
“What the government decided when it came in 2015 was that we must be able to fund our salaries from the money we realise within Kaduna, which means that whatever happens from the federal government we will be able to take care of the salaries and other state’s obligations,” he said.
“There are states who are owing five to eight months salaries because of reliance on federal allocations.
“It is important that we note this and understand that we will bring more and more bills to the House and more initiatives to the state, and understand that bringing revenue to the state is the most important thing to do,” he said.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai presented a N233 billion budget proposal for 2022 to the Kaduna State House of Assembly on October 13.
Mr El-Rufai said the state expects an internally generated revenue of N67.26 billion and N24.9 billion from Value Added Tax (VAT) to partly finance the budget.
The budget has a capital expenditure of N146 billion and recurrent spending of N87.6 billion.
Governor El-Rufai had also said in March that the state will stop relying on federal allocation to service the state budget.
Speaking with journalists after declaring open the 147th meeting of the Joint Tax Board in Kaduna in March, the governor said the state has been boosting its tax collections and channelling the funds to infrastructure, education, and health care.
He disclosed that the state IGR rose to N50.9 billion in 2020.
“We are focused on running the government and doing development projects entirely from tax collection. We don’t want to depend on the federation account. That’s our goal.
“Our motto is Tax for Service; we want you to pay tax and ask us what we do with the tax money and we can show you what we have done.”
Mr El-Rufai noted that people in the state ”were beginning to voluntarily pay tax for the first time in more than 20 years”.