Whereas Cross River State’s debt asset stands at N168,819,230,129.37 (domestic) and N69,383,059,707.6 (external), bringing the state’s total debt asset to N238,202,289,836.97, notwithstanding, the state has been listed amongst eleven other states planning to borrow over N1.75 trillion to fund its budget for year 2020 which is pegged at N1.1 trillion and christened ‘Olimpotic Meristemasis’.
According to investigations by Saturday PUNCH, the 12 states that are planning to borrow N1.75tn to fund their budgets are Lagos, Cross River, Imo, Taraba, Benue, Abia, Akwa Ibom, Plateau, Bauchi, Enugu, Katsina and Oyo with a sum projected budgets of N4.58tn as their appropriation bills for the fiscal year.
The investigation reveals that Lagos, which has the highest budget of N1.168tn for 2020 fiscal year, is planning to borrow N97.5bn to fund the budget, following an estimated revenue of N1.07tn.
It further revealed that Cross River State, which has the second-highest budget of N1.1tn, will be grappling with a budget deficit of N979.84bn, which it hopes to raise through “intellectual money.”
“The total revenue that will accrue to the state was put at N120.32bn, leaving a deficit of N979.84bn.
“Speaking to Saturday PUNCH on how the government will fund the huge deficit, the Special Adviser Media and Publicity to Governor Ben Ayade, Mr Christian Ita, said, “We will use intellectual money to fill the void. Most states budget without making room for direct foreign investment. They are never captured in the budget,” Punch said.