Lagos, Rivers, Ebonyi others top states’ 2021 fiscal performance ranking

BudgIT, a civic-tech organisation leading the advocacy for transparency and accountability in Nigeria and three other African countries has ranked Lagos, Rivers, Anambra, Ebonyi and Kebbi states for growth in its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) as recorded by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS)

The Communications Lead, Damilola Ogundipe in a statement issued on the 2020 edition of its annual states of States report titled Fiscal Options for Building Back Better explained that Ebonyi state grew its IGR by 82.3% from N7.5 billion in 2019 to N13.6 billion in 2020, while Kebbi state grew its revenue by 87.02% from N7.4 billion in 2019 to N13.8 billion in 2020.

According to Damilola, Ogun state (now 19th) and Kano state (now 22nd), dropped out of the top 5 category due to a sharp decline in their IGR in 2020.

According to Damilola, this report is BudgIT’s signature analysis that provides citizens, CSOs, stakeholders and policymakers with robust insights on ways to implement financial and institutional reforms that will improve states’ fiscal performance and sustainability levels.

Also, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) , BudgIT, Gabriel Okeowo, said they examined states’ fiscal health using four metrics namely; the ability of states to meet their operating expenses with IGR and VAT, states’ ability to cover their operating expenses and loan repayment with their total revenue, how much fiscal room states have to borrow more, and the degree to which each state prioritises capital expenditure with respect to their operating expenses.

“According to our report, Rivers state, once again, topped the overall 2021 Fiscal Performance Ranking, indicating that the fiscal fundamentals of this state, compared to others in the country, are more prudently managed.

“Without a doubt, economic shocks from the COVID-19 pandemic took a toll on states’ Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and their share of federally collected revenue in 2020; thus the need to explore options for building back the subnational economies cannot be overstressed.

“Procurement processes are one of the biggest areas through which revenue leakages can occur. Hence, the need for states to adopt open contracting principles to minimize instances of inflated contracts and other forms of procurement and procedural fraud.” Okeowo said.

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