- Osinbajo urges governors to boost IGRin fighting poverty.
- Calls for cooperation in securing the country.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has urged governors to boost Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the next four years to reduce poverty in their state.
Speaking on Monday at an induction programme organised by the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) in Abuja for new and returning governors ahead of the inauguration on May 29, 2019., the vice president said the consequences of boosting states IGR will mitigate the challenges of malnutrition, illiteracy and out of school children.
Osinbajo, who also asked state governors to operate in unity as the Federal Government is ready to support an all-party co-operation said the National Executive Council (NEC) will begin to look at more ways to effectively secure the country.
“So, we will not be saying anything new if and when we raise those complaints; Lagos State, the highest IGR earner was earning 600 million in IGR when the minimum wage was increased from N7,500 to N18, 000, about 140 percent increase.
“We are confronted again with the new increase in the minimum wage. So as scripture says, `there is nothing new under the sun.’ We must confront the problem, not merely by hoping that the Federal Government can do more.
“Already, our deficit is close to two trillion Naira, while debt service is somewhere in the order of 54 percent; states must in the next few years earn more in IGR. We must more effectively collect VAT and increase our agricultural output, work with the Federal Government to make broadband infrastructure available all over the country.”
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On agriculture, Osinbajo said that each state must leverage its most advantageous agricultural produce, by working with the Federal Government’s initiatives in agricultural credit and the recently inaugurated Green Alternative.
While noting that it was possible for states to generate significant revenues from agriculture, Osinbajo assured the inductees that the Federal Government would equitably treat all states in spite of party affiliations.
The induction programme is aimed at supporting incoming governors to develop key governance and management skills that will enable them transit from campaigning to managing the processes of governance.