Capital projects worth N41.979 billion have been awarded by the Ondo State Government across the 18 local government areas of the state this year.
The state commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Pastor Emmanuel Igbasan who made the disclosure at a town hall meeting said the project did not include those implemented by direct labour.
Igbasan who spoke with stakeholders in the Northern Senatorial District of the state at Ikare explained that the amount was for 9 months.
According to the Media Manager of the Commissioner, Banjo Egunjobi, 349 projects totalling N29.89 billion have been awarded in six local government areas while N5.89 billion were paid to contractors.
He told stakeholders among whom were traditional rulers, members of the state House of Assembly, top officials of local government councils, coalition of civil society organizations, non-governmental organisations, artisans, representatives of Farmers Congress, youths and students, that the meeting was initiated to harness the inputs of different groups in the society on the yearly fiscal policy of the state government.
This he stated would enable the government to get their feedback on inputs into the fiscal space of the state and create wealth for the people as well as reverse the prevalent infrastructural deficit with a view to enhance a better and brighter future for the upcoming generation.
Igbasan hinted that following the signing of the Ondo State Fiscal Responsibility Bill of 2017 by the present administration, it has become mandatory for government to seek the inputs of the people or their representatives in the preparation of the yearly budget, saying that this would engender participatory planning and budgeting at all levels in the state.
In his welcome address, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr Bunmi Alade noted that in recent years, the focus on budget has assumed greater prominence with increased democratization, citizens participation and the desire to respond to developmental challenges.
Alade opined that for the state to have robust and realistic budget it must capture the interest and reflect the values and priorities of the people of the state.
In his remarks, the Olukare of Ikare, Oba Akadiri Momoh, who is also the Chairman of the State Council of Obas and other traditional rulers at the meeting commended Governor Akeredolu for providing the forum for the people at the grassroots to contribute to the fiscal policy of the government.
They highlighted the priority needs of their communities that should be included in the 2019 budget to include rehabilitation of roads, provision of portable water and allocation of funds to take care of the welfare of traditional rulers in the senatorial district.