…Gets N795m PAYE Refunds; Explains Review Of Budget Figure

By Wole Adedeji, Ilorin

The Kwara State government on Tuesday said it has won $16.9 million worth of achievements in the World Bank Fiscal Transparency and Accountability Rating.

The outstanding rating was the 2019/2020 World Bank-supported State Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability, SFTAS, programme for results said to be the highest ever achieved by the state since the initiative began in 2018.

A statement issued by the state Ministry of Finance and Planning said that the awards came after the state satisfied the disbursements linked indicators, DLIs, contained in the Annual Performance Assessment, APA, final report submitted by the independent verification agents, IVAs, that had earlier visited Kwara State.

The statement added that the included improved financial reporting and budget reliability; increased citizens engagement in budget process; strengthened internally generated revenues, IGRs; biometric and BVN used to reduce payroll fraud.

The rating index also, included strengthened public debt management; improved debt sustainability; implementation of a tax compliance for individual taxpayers and businesses.

It also included strengthened procurement function for COVID-19 or emergency situation and facilitated participation of SMEs in public procurement resilient recovery phase; publication and approval of amended COVID-19 response budget.

The statement added, “The import of the foregoing is that the state is eligible to the total sum of $16,900,000, representing performance-based grant for 2019 APA, with an earlier disbursement of $5 million in November.

“Of the balance of $11.9 million, the state has received additional $9.4 million on Monday January 4, and awaits the balance of $2.5 million later in the month.”

Meanwhile, the state government has explained why it jerked up the budget estimates from N123 billion to roughly N135 billion, representing an increment of about N11 billion widely reported on Tuesday.

The breakdown of the reviewed budget, according to the statement, included a review of the opening balance from N13.6 billion to N19 billion, based on funds mopped up from across the MDAs; VAT from N14.6 billion to N15.4 billion; the Pay As You Earn, PAYE, from N5.6 billion to N5.8 billion; administrative charges from N194.6 million to N346.6 million; Land Use Charge from N124.8 million to N174.8 million; SFTAS capital receipt from N3.8 billion to N6.1 billion; and termed loan from N4 billion to N6 billion.

The ministry also announced the receipt of N795,327,222:21 as the third tranche of the 25 per cent refund of unremitted PAYE from the Federal Government’s MDAs domiciled in Kwara State.


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