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IGR: Katsina halts cattle tax over terror attacks, poverty

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BY ANDY ASEMOTA, Katsina
Efforts of the Katsina State Government to boost its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) have been hampered as terror attacks and prevailing poverty compel the government to suspend cattle tax.
Making the revelation during Katsina 2023 Citizen Budget Sensitization Workshop organized by the State Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning yesterday in Katsina, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry,  Alhaji Abdullahi Abubakar, lamented that the amount expected from the cattle tax had been appropriated in this year’s budget to assist orphans with scholarship and empowerment of widows including vulnerable persons.
Abubakar told the district and village heads, civil society organizations and religious leaders at the grand finale of interactive sessions spread across the seven zonal local government headquarters in the state that its internal revenue would not shoulder even government’s overhead expenditure.
According to him, a close look showed that the government realized between N500m to N600m monthly revenue as against over three billion Naira being expended monthly on salaries, excluding Katsina varsity wage bill.
Abubakar also noted that Katsina budget for 2023 would focus on consolidation of the present administration’s strides through completion of all on -going  developmental projects aimed at enhancing the living standard of the people.
Highlighting the infrastructure projects, he lauded the dedication of Governor Aminu Bello Masari of the state to complete the multi – billion Naira GRA Fly – over, Kofar Kaura and Kofar Kwaya Under – pass bridges among other road projects within and outside the state capital this year or before the end of his tenure.
The permanent secretary also disclosed that the Federal Government had been assisting the state through various Social Investment Programmes to cushion the hardship of under provided persons, with a disbursement of no less than one billion, two million Naira as Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) to affected beneficiaries every other month.
On the sensitization workshop, Abubakar said it was initiated in the last three years to ensure qualitative inputs from the public for budget processes and economic planning.
In his remarks, the District Head of Kaita, Alhaji Yazid Abdulkarim, applauded the policies of the incumbent government and pledged the meaningful contributions of the participants and other key stakeholders in the state.
Most of the inputs included requests for roads and bridges construction or rehabilitation, creation of more employment opportunities and establishment of six additional special schools across the state for persons living with disabilities.
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