Gov Otti’s Aide Defends State Q3 Budget Expenses,Says It Meets International Standard

 

The Special Adviser to Governor Alex Otti on Due Process, Dr Oluebube Chukwu has defended the Abia State Q3 budget expenses, stating that they align with international best practices.

 

Recall that the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kazie Ukoh, had issued a statement to clarify the expenses in response to recent claims circulating on social media regarding the Abia State Government’s expenditure.

 

The statement released on November 20, 2023, by the government which addressed the misinformation surrounding the government’s Q3 budget report listed the total amount spent so far by the entire government of Abia State for Refreshments and Meals as captured in all MDA’s for the period as N223,389,889.84 and noted that the stated figure covers expenses for special events, such as retreats, conferences, and related events.

 

According to the statement, the welfare expenditure of the Abia State Government which covers all MDAs of government amounted to N397,520,734.84 and deals with issues such as Health, Rehabilitation and Public Emergencies.

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Speaking to Newsmen in his office at Government House Umuahia, Dr Chukwu stated that the publication of the Q3 budget report of the Abia State Government are in line with the government’s commitment to transparency, good governance and fiscal discipline.

 

He emphasized that the decision to publish the Q3 budget expenses stems from the government’s unwavering dedication to fostering trust and ensuring that citizens are well-informed about the allocation and utilization of public funds.

 

“This move reflects a global trend where governments are increasingly recognizing the importance of transparency in building public confidence.

 

“The comprehensive breakdown of expenditures includes allocations for key sectors such as healthcare, infrastructure, and social welfare and providing this level of detail not only enhances accountability but also allows citizens to actively engage in the governance process by understanding how their tax contributions are being utilized for the betterment of the state.

 

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“Moreover, the publication of the Q3 budget expenses serves as a model for other states in Nigeria, setting a precedence for proactive disclosure of financial information”, the Governor’s Aide stated.

 

Dr. Chukwu stressed that embracing international best practices is crucial for attracting foreign investment, as it demonstrates a commitment to fiscal responsibility and sound financial management.

 

He noted that the state government in a bid to ensure accessibility, has made available the budget breakdown through various channels, including the Abia state government official website and public libraries.

 

“This accessibility is essential for fostering a culture of civic participation, as it empowers citizens to actively monitor government spending and contribute to the overall development agenda.

 

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The decision to disclose the Q3 budget expenses aligns with global standards recommended by institutions such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank and by adhering to these standards, the Abia State Government aims to enhance its credibility on the international stage and foster stronger partnerships with global organizations”, Dr Chukwu stated.