Ada Wodu, Calabar
The Cross River State Governor, Professor Ben Ayade, on Thursday presented the 2020 budget to the state House of Assembly.
The budget estimates tagged budget of Olimpotic meristemasis is pegged at N1,100,167,507.09.
Giving a breakdown of the budget, Ayade said N911 billion representing 82% of the estimates will be for capital estimates while N188 billion representing 17.2% will be spent on recurrent expenditure.
He said N44 billion was allocated to the health sector, N38 billion for education, N22 billion for agriculture while N85 billion will go to the New Cities Project.
On taxation, the governor said no nation taxes its people to prosperity and so daily taxes will be abolished for low-income earners including traders and civil servants who earn below N100,000 per month will be exempted from taxes.
He said a flat monthly tax will rather be paid by low-income earners while the government will continue to legalise hawking by creating some hawking bases in the state to assist low-income earners.
He said the tax regime in the state beginning from next year will become softer as a means of boosting the income of low-income earners and high-income earners will be the ones who pay more tax.
He added that agro-based industries under construction in the state will come on stream next year and the government hopes to earn about N380 billion from the industries.
He said the budget looks unachievable but his administration is determined to actualise it and sought the cooperation of the legislature.
In his response, Eteng Williams, Speaker of the State Assembly promised to give the necessary support and assured that the budget will be approved before the end of the year.