Osun vows to do without federal allocation, seeks funds from land use charges
Written by Morenike Adebayo on April 6, 2016
Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola, on Tuesday said his government would no longer rely on allocations from the federation account for the execution of its programmes.
The governor, who made the statement at the signing into law of the Osun State Land Use Charge Law in Osogbo on Tuesday, said the recent economic hardship had provided an opportunity for the state to learn hard lessons.
According to him, previous and present administration had so much relied on federal allocation that when the oil glut came, it could no longer pay salaries and other critical expenditure of government.
Mr. Aregbesola said the state learnt a lot of lessons from the situation where it had to go cap in hand to the Federal government for the allocation that could no longer take care of the primary needs of the state.
He said a situation where the state could not be self-sufficient amidst abundant human and material endowments was an insult, stating that looking inwards for funding state projects had become imperative.
“As you are all aware, governments at all levels have been under severe financial assault for some time. This is as a result of a precipitous fall in revenues from the federation account,” he explained.
“We are here facing formidable challenges in paying salaries and meeting other critical expenditure of government. This is because we have been programmed to live day-by- day on allocation from the federation account.
“The lesson we are taking from the situation is that living on other people’s bakery is never reliable. It is high time we started to bake our own cake by ourselves, if we don’t want to starve.”
Mr. Aregbesola said the state was turning to land because it is of great value and a primary resource especially because it provides work for people and other resources are derived from it.
“This is why we, as a government, have decided to make law that will also benefit government from part of what the people derive from land. This is the basis of the Land Use Charge Law,” he said.
Mr. Aregbesola stated that part of the attraction of the law was that it would safeguard people against abuse and arbitrariness.
He said anyone, on receipt of a charge assessment, can make formal complaint to the Commissioner for Finance on high assessment and request that it should be reduced.