Lagos Debt Profile Stands at N158bn, Says Finance Commissioner

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Lagos Debt Profile Stands at N158bn, Says Finance Commissioner
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The Lagos State Commissioner for Finance, Dr. Rabiu Olowo, said Thursday the state’s debt profile currently stood at N158 billion.

Olowo, who disclosed this to journalists at a media briefing on the state’s 2021 budget, however, added that the state government has committed N31 billion to debt servicing.

The briefing was attended by other commissioners and special advisers in Lagos.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu signed the state’s 2021 budget of N1.64 trillion on December 31, 2020.

The Lagos State House of Assembly passed the budget on December 29, 2020.

In the budget, the state government earmarked N702.935 billion for capital expenditure and N460.587 billion for recurrent spending.

The commissioner said the debt was sustainable at 22 percent of debt-revenue ratio, adding that this was below the Federal Government’s benchmark of 30 percent and World Bank’s benchmark of 40 percent.

He revealed that the Lagos State government planned to finance the N192.494 billion budget deficit through external sources, internal sources, and bonds.

Olowo said N100 billion would be sourced internally, N52 billion externally and N40 billion through bonds.

The Lagos State Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Mr. Sam Egbube, said the main focus of the budget was to accomplish the governor’s THEMES Agenda.

He said the state government had set up a 10-point plan to achieve the agenda.

These, according to him, include aggressive development and maintenance of infrastructure across the state.

Others are creation of employment and enhancement of food security, improvement of civic participation, cooperation in governance, and investment in human capital development.

The state’s Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, said the state government focused more on COVID-19 last year because it was a global pandemic that deserved a lot of attention.

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