Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said the State should provide device other means of raising their Internally Generated Revenues.
He started this on Thursday at the maiden edition of Ekiti State’s maiden investment forum in Ado-Ekiti.
The Vice President stated, “Thinking differently, there is a need for a sub-national to think like a sovereign State.” “You have a bigger GDP and even more revenues than many nations. There is a different mindset when you are sure of a monthly allocation of cash, at least enough to pay salaries, whether you generate income or not. This is the challenge. In the so-called Dutch disease, one becomes complacent.
“But what if you had to take responsibility for all those who reside within your borders, pay all salaries, from internally generated revenue?”
In 1999/2000, the VP said Lagos State improved its IGR from an N600million monthly to about N45billion today. He said the State doubled up as the then Federal Government seized illegally, allocations meant for them.
Prof. Osinbajo added that although a state within a Federation is not a nation, it ought to behave like one to boost its economic development further.
“The economy of the sub-national is a peculiar animal,” he said. “The State within the Federation is not a nation, but it must behave like one, it derives some resources from the Federal pool, and generates some income, the overall sum will provide infrastructure and services to the community. The size of the sum and the quantum of opportunity available to provide livelihoods for the populace will depend on how the State enables local and external investors, small and large to put their resources into business and commercial activity business in the State.”
He added that: “The funded portion of the State’s budget is after all a mere fraction of the sum total of economic activity or income-generating activity, formal or informal within the State. So, the attractiveness of a state to commerce is a radical issue.”
The vice president concluded that “the very lives and livelihoods of the people within the borders of the State, whether the people will live prosperous and happy lives, be educated, have access to affordable medical care, depends on it.”