Federal Government Allocates N7.76tn: Salaries and Beyond in 2023 Budget
The Federal Government is set to allocate N7.76tn in 2023 for various expenditures, including salaries for federal workers and non-debt recurrent costs. The approval stems from the initial 2023 budget and a supplementary budget, which includes a N2.18tn augmentation to cover additional expenses, such as a wage reward for workers following the fuel subsidy removal.
Abubakar Bagudu, the Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, outlined key allocations, specifying N605bn for national defense and security to sustain and accelerate gains in the sector. Additionally, N300bn is earmarked for bridge repairs, including the Eko and Third Mainland bridges, and for the construction, rehabilitation, and maintenance of roads nationwide.
A significant portion, N210bn, is allocated for wage awards, wherein the federal government agreed to pay N35,000 to approximately 1.5 million federal employees for the months of September to December 2023, following negotiations with the Nigeria Labour Congress.
The detailed appropriation breakdown reveals N1.01tn for recurrent expenditure and N1.17tn for capital expenditure, with the supplementary budget increasing total non-debt recurrent expenditure to N7.76tn and capital expenditure to N4.53tn. This adjustment raises the overall budget for 2023 to N19.81tn, with a net budget of N13.26tn after debt servicing is excluded.
Of the N7.76tn allocated for recurrent expenditure, 55.54 per cent, equivalent to N4.31tn, is designated for salaries. The government’s expenditure report for the first quarter of 2023 indicates spending of N978.10bn on salaries, N1.24tn on non-debt recurrent expenditure, and N175.45bn on capital expenditure.
To finance the budget, the government has borrowed N2.30tn, and the projected fiscal deficit for the year is N9.01tn. The Federal Government is facing financial challenges due to a decline in revenue, attributed to falling oil production and a lack of effective economic diversification. The Accountant General of the Federation, Mrs Oluwatoyin Madein, emphasized the need to address the revenue-expenditure gap amidst rising costs and economic uncertainties.