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Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, on Thursday, signed into law the state’s 2022 Appropriation Bill, which was passed by the House of Assembly.

Governor Diri assented to the bill in his office in Government House, Yenagoa in the presence of the Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, Speaker of the House of Assembly, Abraham Ingobere, his deputy, Michael Ogbere, the House Leader, Monday Bubou, other principal officers of the assembly and top government functionaries.

Governor Diri had in October presented to the assembly the bill tagged “Budget of Sustainable Growth” of N310,717,608,362.

Speaker of the assembly, Abraham Ingobere, however, explained that the original figure was increased by N3,747,410,619.

The governor expressed happiness that the budget was speedily passed by the assembly within the 2021 fiscal year.

He stated that his administration was working towards moving away from dependence on federal allocations by improving the state’s internally generated revenue.

Governor Diri charged those entrusted with the responsibility of collecting revenue to do more to increase the state’s revenue profile from one billion naira to N1.5 billion monthly.

The Bayelsa helmsman appreciated the House for its commitment and called for more collaboration between both arms of government for the development of the state.

His words: “The budget was laid on the floor of the house on October 20, 2021.

“It went through the legislative processes of lawmaking. It has gone through the scrutiny of the eagle eyes of the legislators and I’m happy that I have given my assent to this bill this 30th day of December 2021.

“The total budget for 2022 is as follows: Three hundred and fourteen billion, four hundred and sixty five million, eighteen thousand, nine hundred and ninety seven naira.

“We have to work as a government to move away from dependence on federal allocation, which has characterised our state government over the years. Therefore, I like to charge the officials in charge of revenue collection to ensure that in 2022 we have better figures of internally generated revenue in our state. The current revenue falls far too short of the expectations of the state government.

“As a government, we are prioritising Internally generated revenue as one that must increase under this government.”

Diri urged all Bayelsans to work with his administration for the development of the state rather than engaging in criticisms that do the state no good.

Speaking earlier, the Speaker, Abraham Ingobere, stated that the additional N3,747,410,619was necessitated by the need to include some government agencies and other areas that were not captured in the bill.

He noted that figures presented were achievable based on the key parameters used to estimate the budget.

Ingobere applauded the governor for proposing a people-oriented budget, which he said would satisfy the needs of Bayelsans in the next fiscal year as it captured projects that cut across the three senatorial districts.

The Speaker also thanked the state’s economic team for doing a comprehensive work, which made it easier for them to pass the bill.

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