A Human Right Activist and the Executive Director, Conscience for Human Right and Conflict Resolution, Idris Miliki has bemoaned the 4.44 per cent 2019 budget allocated to the state agricultural sector.
He said the amount would not be able to diversify the state economy via agriculture.
Miliki also condemned the attitude of Kogi state government for hidden and denying the general public from having access to the state budget documents.
The Executive Director stated this in Lokoja on Thursday during the Analysis of the 2019 Kogi state agriculture budget and the review of the 2018 budget on agriculture by Public Financing of Agriculture Committee sponsored by Participation Initiative for Behavioural Change in Development (PIBCID in partnership wit ActionAid Nigeria.
According to him, agriculture which is capable of generating enormous revenue and create employment has been neglected by the present administration, lamenting that the state government need to improve on the budget in 2020 in order to inject life into the sector.
On the budget, the human right activist lamented that budget meant for the general public are hidden and kept away from the people, urging the state ministry of budget to always make the budget a public documents.
He commended PIBCID for the budget analysis of the 2019 review to enable the stakeholders know the content of the budge and its expected performance.
In her remark, the Executive Director, PIBCID Gift Omoniwa Owonipa, said the reason for the budget committee was to disseminate analysis of the 2018 and 2019 budget to uncover the achievements recorded in the agricultural sector of the state.
“We are hoping that with this dissemination , there will be an opportunity for stakeholders to react and respond approximately where the budget is not performing.
” his will also make us to get commitment in the inclusion of citizens in the budgeting process and to also ensure that items budgeted for, are implemented during the execution of the budget.
“For 2019 we have 4.44 per cent of the state budget allocated which is grossly inadequate to active anything meaningful for farmers especially women who are predominantly farmers in the rural areas.
“Maputo declaration of 2003 said 10 per cent of budgetary provision should be allocated to agriculture, but in Kogi agriculture is likely to suffer in 2019” he noted.
The Acting Director , ministry of budget, Sani Haruna Mohammed , said the reduction of 2019 agriculture budget was due to change in the priority of the government.
He pointed out that a lot of investment had been made in the sector , saying the 2019 budget was to consolidate on the ongoing effort in the agricultural sector.