Delta records N197 billion deficit in revenue target
Goes tough on road tax ticket collection
The Delta State Government is targeting five per cent yearly revenue growth, even though the national economy is in recession – a situation that saw the state recording N197 billion deficit.
The state also hopes to create 50,000 jobs yearly up to 2019; increase household incomes, reduce unemployment, overall poverty and proportion of Deltans living below the poverty line all by five per cent.
The state Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, who disclosed this in Lagos at the weekend during the public policy platform, organised by the Lagos Business School (LBS), and the Nigerian Economic Submit Group (NESG), also hopes to achieve a more comfortable level of debt sustainability by 2019.
According to the him: “The fiscal imbalance of the past has been curtailed through fiscal discipline, prudence and accountability.
“Hence, the revenue for the first half of the year is marginally higher than the expenditure, with positive percentage variance of 0.9 per cent.
“A total of 17,173 direct and indirect private sector jobs were created through the various programmes, projects and initiatives of our administration between August 2015 and May 2016.”
He said his government had also instituted measures to pool them through, including integrity, inclusiveness, transparency, fiscal discipline, effective public communication, community engagement and excellence in service delivery.
With regard to the state economic diversification, Okowa said he would promote the adoption of new technology and environmentally-friendly farming processes; attract new entrants (particularly youths) to agriculture, and agribusiness and agro-industry by providing comprehensive package of incentives.
He said: “Each agro-industrial epicentre will be driven by an anchor investor devoted to agricultural value chain development activities including agro-processing, commercial farming, out-grower schemes, market linkages and farm support services.”
In another development, the state government through the Directorate of Transport has commenced the clamp-down on all tricycle operators that default in the purchase of the daily road tax ticket prescribed by law for those operating tricycles/motorcycles on commercial purposes.
A statement from the Transport Commissioner, Mr. Vincent Uduagha, said that 36 tricycles were impounded from Warri and its environs, reiterating that the exercise would be continuous as long as some dissident operators evade the tax tickets, which affect negatively the internally-generated revenue (IGR) of the state.
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