BY IBRAHIM ABDULHAMID, DECEMBER 13, 2023 | 03:20 PM
Maiduguri, Borno State – The Borno State Government has unveiled its 2024 budget, outlining ambitious plans for infrastructure development, healthcare, education, and economic growth.
Prof. Babagana Umara Zulum, while presenting the budget, totaling N340.6 billion, said it reflects his government's commitment to rebuilding the state after years of conflict and instability.
He presented the budget today at the Borno State House of Assembly in Maiduguri, accompanied by his commissioners, aides and lawmakers, including senators, members of the House of Representatives and other dignitaries.
Key highlights of the budget: • Construction of Eye Hospitals: Two eye hospitals will be built in Monguno and Biu, improving access to specialized eye care services for residents.
• Establishment of Dental Hospitals: Monguno and Biu will also receive new dental hospitals, providing much-needed dental care services to the communities.
• Orthopaedic Hospital in Maiduguri: An orthopaedic hospital will be established in Maiduguri, catering to patients with bone and joint injuries.
• Teachers and Health Workers Quarters: 400 units of two-bedroom quarters will be constructed in Magumeri and Gubio to provide housing for teachers and health workers.
• Oil Processing Mill in Gubio: An oil processing mill will be established in Gubio, boosting the local economy and creating jobs.
• Schools of Nursing: Two schools of nursing will be established, one each in Monguno and Gwoza, to address the shortage of nurses and midwives in the state.
• High Islamic Colleges: Six high Islamic colleges will be built in Baga, Gajiganna, Gajiram, Benisheik, Gwoza, and Chibok, promoting religious education and scholarship.
• Hospital Upgrades: The General Hospital Molai and the Infectious Hospital Ngarranam will be upgraded to specialist hospitals, offering advanced medical care.
• New Schools: Three mega schools will be built in Gwozari (Kalari, Mairi, and Uba), and secondary schools will be established in Rann, New Marte, and Ngala.
• ICT Centres: Access to technology will be improved with the construction of ICT centres in Baga, Kaga, Damboa, and Hawul.
• Government Lodges: Government lodges will be built in Dikwa, New Marte, Briyel, and Kwaya to accommodate government officials and visitors.
• Erosion Control: Erosion control projects will be implemented in Bargu, Shani, Uba, Fikeyel, and Gandu to mitigate the impact of erosion on communities.
• Mega-Water Works: Clean water access will be improved with the construction of mega-water works in Bama, Gubio, Gajiganna, Gubio, Magumeri, and Damboa.
• Irrigation Systems: Irrigation systems will be established in Mafa, Dikwa, Gajibo, Logumane, and Ngamboru-Wullgo, and existing irrigation projects in Jafi and Damasak will be resuscitated, contributing to agricultural development.
• Electrification: Gwoza, Dikwa, Damask, Nganzai, Askira, Chibok, and Damboa will be connected to the electricity grid, improving access to power for residents and businesses.
• Investment in Education: N10 billion will be allocated for equipment for the State University of Teaching Hospital and its completion, while scholarships will be provided to 600 students to study nursing and midwifery courses. Additionally, 100 students will be sponsored in various fields, particularly STEM and languages, and 20 pilots will be trained.
• Economic Development Initiatives: A new market will be built in Maiduguri, and N5 billion will be provided to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the less privileged.
• Infrastructure Projects: The International Hotel will be reconstructed, the State Hotel will be completed, a wire and nail industry will be established, an international conference hall will be built, the Gunda-Miringa Road will be constructed, and mega shopping complexes will be built in Ngala, Nganzai, Monguno, and Marte.
• Rehabilitation and Reconstruction: The Damboa Road will be rehabilitated, 500 houses will be constructed in Dalwa, internally displaced persons (IDPs) will be resettled back to their communities, and the Muna and Madinatu IDP camps will be closed.
• Road Construction Projects: The Rann-Kala Road, the road from Baga to the Fish Dam, and the flyover at the West-End Roundabout will be constructed.
• Water Management: Nine mega dams will be constructed across the state.
• Other Initiatives: A rehabilitation centre will be built, the Eastern Byepass from Auno-Gubio Road will be constructed, and dual carriage roads will be built from Shehu's Roundabout to Molai, Monday Market to Kofa Biyu, and Idrissa Khadi to Gamboru Markets.
• Boosting Healthcare:
The budget includes provisions for the construction of new eye and dental hospitals in Monguno and Biu, as well as an orthopaedic hospital in Maiduguri. This will significantly improve access to specialized medical care for residents across the state. Additionally, the government plans to upgrade two existing hospitals – the General Hospital Molai and the Infectious Hospital Ngarranam – to specialist status, further enhancing healthcare capacity.
• Investing in Education:
The 2024 budget places a strong emphasis on education, with plans to construct teachers and health workers quarters in Magumeri and Gubio, as well as teachers quarters in Biu and Hawul. This will address the accommodation needs of educators and healthcare professionals, contributing to improved service delivery. Additionally, the government will establish schools of nursing in Monguno and Gwoza, expanding access to nursing education and training.
• Infrastructure Development:
The budget allocates substantial funds for the construction and rehabilitation of roads across the state, including the Gunda-Miringa Road and the reconstruction of the Damboa Road. This will improve connectivity and facilitate economic activity within Borno. Additionally, the government plans to construct mega shopping complexes in Ngala, Nganzai, Monguno, and Marte, as well as a new market in Maiduguri, further boosting economic opportunities.
• Empowering Communities:
The government recognizes the importance of supporting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and has allocated N5 billion for their development. This initiative will empower entrepreneurs and contribute to job creation. Additionally, the budget includes provisions for the settlement of 25% of gratuities owed by the state and local governments, providing much-needed financial relief to retirees.
• Mega Projects:
Several mega projects are included in the 2024 budget, including the construction of a new international conference center, a wire and nail industry, and a modern international conference center. These projects have the potential to attract investment, create jobs, and enhance Borno's profile as a destination for business and tourism.
• Resettlement and Rehabilitation:
The government remains committed to the resettlement of internally displaced persons (IDPs) and has allocated resources to facilitate their return to their communities. The budget also includes provisions for the construction of rehabilitation centers and for the closure of IDP camps in Muna and Madinatu.
• Environment and Water Resources:
The government recognizes the importance of environmental protection and has allocated funds for erosion control in several areas. Additionally, the budget includes provisions for the construction of mega-water works in Bama, Gubio, Gajiganna, Gubio, and Magumeri, ensuring access to clean water for communities.
• Education and Skills Development:
The budget includes provisions for the training of teachers and for the provision of scholarships to students pursuing nursing and midwifery programs. Additionally, the government will sponsor 100 students in various fields of study, with a focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) courses and languages. This commitment to education and skills development will equip young people with the knowledge and skills needed to contribute to the state's economic growth.
• Fiscal Framework:
The 2024 budget is based on a projected oil benchmark of US$77 per barrel and a daily production of 1.5 million barrels. The budget is expected to be financed through a combination of recurrent revenue, capital receipts, and aid and grants.
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31 October 2022