Massive debt: Lagos moves to borrow N97.533bn

Commissioner for Finance, Dr Rabiu Olowo; Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr Sam Egube and the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso; at the Press Briefing.

The Lagos State Government is to borrow N97.533 billion to fund the 2020 budget of N1.169 trillion.

As at last year, Lagos’ total debt profile rose to N1.04 trillion, according to report from the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS.

According to the report, Lagos’ domestic debt profile stood at N519.37 billion while its total foreign debt stood at $1,451,639,937.86 (N522.59 billion).

Of the $1,451,639,937.86 foreign debt, multilateral debt accounted for $1,307,809,937.86 and bilateral debt, $143,830,000.00.

However, giving a breakdown of the 2020 budget on Tuesday, Sam Egube, Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget at aa news conference in Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, said the 2020 Budget was consistent with the T.H.E.M.E.S agenda and designed to give priority to the completion of inherited on-going projects.

He said the total budget size of ₦1.168 trillion would be funded from a total revenue estimate of ₦1.071 trillion, comprising Total Internally Generated Revenue (TIGR) of N886.041bn; Capital Receipts of N232.29bn and Federal Transfer of N184.988bn.

“A significant percentage of the projected TIGR of N500bn is expected to be contributed by LIRS. We shall achieve this by expanding the tax net through the deployment of technology, among other initiatives, which includes massive investments in technology and other facilities to improve the efficiency in operations of all revenue generating agencies.

“We believe that there are huge revenue generating opportunities in the informal sector, including real estates, transportation etc. for which Lagos State is known for.

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“Included in the Capital Receipt is a brought forward balance of N175bn, that comprise of proceeds from 2019 Loan and Bond issuance of ₦100bn & ₦75bn respectively. This balance gives the administration a significant head-start in the implementation of major capital projects this year.

“The deficit of ₦97.533bn is projected to be funded by a combination of internal and external loans. We have maintained a conservative posture in our projection for Federal Transfers/Receipts in view of the production challenges within the Oil Sector,” Egube explained.

In the budget, a budgetary provision of N117.248bn (against the sum of N31.673bn expended by November Y2019) is provided for the maintenance of roads and other infrastructures within the State.

This increase, Egube said, shall address the zero-pothole strategy, create link-roads within the metropolis to resolve traffic congestion and its attendant risks, adding that on development of infrastructure along the coastline, a provision of N11.288bn had been earmarked to enhance coastal infrastructure in order to curb the ocean surge and protect lives and properties.

On traffic management and transportation, the commission disclosed that a total sum of ₦44.510bn (against 2019 actual of N17.590bn) was budgeted for the Blue and Red rail lines; Junction improvement all around the state; completion of trailer parks in the State; among others, while on education, the total sum of ₦136.100 billion was budgeted, as the figure is N70.407bn higher than the 2019 provision of N65.693bn.

The 2020 provision is designed to cater for the underlisted projects/programmes amongst others: construction/rehabilitation of schools (300 schools would be renovated in 2020. This is the first phase of the school rehabilitation programme); provision of furniture for both primary and secondary schools; provision of equipment for science laboratories and the Eko-Excel Project to improve learning outcomes using technology in early education.

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“The sum of ₦10.629bn is provisioned for building and upgrading of IT Infrastructure Statewide, e-GIS Land automation system, Single Billing system and ease of tax payment, Levies and Other Revenue enhancement initiatives. The Smart City project is targeted at deploying technology to enhance security in the State and will also enhance our revenue generating efforts. The administration will deliver a 3000km metro-broadband fiber infrastructure through a PPP initiative.

“Furthermore, we will continue to invest in the Lagos state resident registration initiative in conjunction with NIMC to gather useful data and information for planning purposes.

“A total sum of N111.775bn (as against a total sum of N53.141bn in 2019) was provided for the continuous upgrading/renovation of health facilities and completion of on-going healthcare infrastructure, including Maternal and Child Care Centers (MCCs); and the health insurance scheme. This represents over 110% increased provision for the health sector, thereby demonstrating the administration’s determination to ensure access to health care.

“A total sum of ₦66.586bn was earmarked for this sector in Y2020, out of which a sum of ₦11.917bn (as against Y2019 approved budget of N2.652bn) is meant for construction/upgrading/maintenance of drainage channels (De-flooding Programmes) and procurement of specialized equipment for flood abatement purposes, while the sum of ₦29.343bn has also been provided for LAWMA for waste management and collection in the state. ₦10.750bn proposed for Advancement of Adiyan waterworks (phase II) and Rehabilitation of mini waterworks all over the State, including improvement of water pipelines and reticulation and procurement of water chemicals, has also been provisioned in the Y2020 budget,” he said.

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On Tourism, the commission stated that the sum of ₦7.481bn is earmarked for the Development of Heritage Centre for Leadership (Lugard House), upgrade of National Museum, Global Citizens Conference, and Construction of other Tourism facilities in Lagos.

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  1. So with all the revenue Lagos state generates,the state is still borrowing. This country is just a scam.

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