Several states of the federation recently followed President Muhammadu Buhari’s example by presenting their 2018 budgets to their respective state assemblies, but something that caught the eye was the funny, sometimes outrageous names these budgets bear.
Buhari’s 2018 budget was christened “Budget of Consolidation”, but with less than 40 percent of the 2017 budget – termed ‘Budget of Recovery and Growth’ – implemented so far, experts say there is little or nothing to consolidate on.
Bismarck Rewane, an economic expert, had described Buhari’s 2018 budget thus: “It’s a prudent budget, it’s a budget of consolidation but you only consolidate after you achieve the growth that you aspire to achieve.”
How did the states describe theirs?
AYADE’S KINETIC MOTION IN CROSS RIVER
Of all the nomenclatures given to the 2018 budgets presented by the various state governors so far, none is more interesting, or better put hilarious, than that of Ben Ayade’s Cross River State, which he christened ‘Budget of Kinetic Crystallisation’. Whatever that means!
This is aside the fact that the budget amount is an eye-popping N1.3 trillion — the highest-ever by a state government.
This is “a kinetic budget that allows me flexibility to dream to the extent that God has given me the intellectual capacity to reach,” Ayade had said.
“It is a budget that crystallises the depth of our vision into action in the Year 2018. It is meant to draw the perspective of a humongous, large, ambitious budget.
“It is not enveloped by our purchasing capacity but by the capacity of our thought process. It is designed and tailored to fit our dream.”
OBIANO’S VALUE FOR MONEY
If Ayade’s budget of kinetic crystallisation is confusing, what then can be said of Willie Obiano’s ‘Budget of Value for Money, Economic Diversification and Job Creation’?
Obiano recenntly emerged victorious from a governorship election which, though adjudged “free and fair”, was also said to have witnessed high incidents of vote buying and selling.
According to reports from election monitors, all the major political parties in the state used money, and in some cases plates of cooked food, to entice voters.
Perhaps, Obiano, by saying the 2018 budget would be that of value for money, meant to tell citizens of the state that he would have to first get value for the money he spent in buying their votes, before leaving the crumbs for the people.
The list of the needless naming of annual budgets is endless, and at the end of the day they do not achieve anything.
Governor Umar Ganduje of Kano State termed his 2018 budget as ‘Budget of Reality’ but no one can say for sure (other than the man himself) what he actually meant.
In Adamawa, it is ‘Budget of Hope and Empowerment’. In Akwa Ibom, it is ‘Budget of Consolidation on Industrialisation’. In Delta State, it is ‘Budget of Hope and Consolidation’. Jigawa’s is ‘Budget of Economic Diversification and Self-sufficiency’. Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State christened his as ‘Budget of Consolidation’.
Katsina State has a ‘Budget of Actualization’, Kwara has a ‘Budget of Sustained Growth and Prosperity’, while Nasarrawa has a ‘Budget of Sustainable Development’. In Ogun, it is ‘Budget of Accelerated Development’! Really?
We cannot begrudge the governors for their style of christening their budgets, but it’s a real wonder how Nigerians are still wallowing in lack and penury with all these wondrous budget names.
Imagine if Ogun State were to experience “accelerated development” in 2018, or Nasarawa were to truly “diversify” its economy, or if Delta actually gave “hope” to the people. Unfortunately, we know that this time next year, we will still be discussing the very issues on which the respective 2018 budgets were built.
So, why have a name that has no meaning in terms abiding by its spirit? Only the governors can answer.