2024 Budget: Government Allocates N6.7tn for Defence, Education, and Roads, Aims for N10.4tn Tax Revenue

By  Milcah   Tanimu

President Bola Tinubu’s administration plans to allocate N6.75tn from its projected N27.5tn budget in 2024 to key sectors, including defence, education, and infrastructure, according to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Abubakar Bagudu. This substantial allocation aims to enhance national security, education, and critical infrastructure projects.

The breakdown reveals that N6.48tn (96%) of this budget will go towards personnel and pension expenses, representing a notable increase from the 2023 provision. The government also eyes N10.4tn from tax, dividends, and other sources.

President Tinubu, presenting the ‘Budget of Renewed Hope’ to the National Assembly, emphasized completing critical infrastructure projects to address economic structural issues. Defence and internal security take top priority, with a focus on overhauling the internal security architecture.

The budget anticipates a minimum 3.76% economic growth, despite inflationary challenges. Key economic assumptions include a conservative oil price benchmark of $77.96 per barrel and a daily oil production estimate of 1.78 million barrels per day.

Education funding sees a significant boost of 101.85%, with N2.18tn allocated, compared to N1.08tn in the 2023 budget. Defence and security receive a 46.39% increase, reaching N3.25tn, while the health sector gets a 23.15% improvement at N1.33tn.

Infrastructure development in power, transport, water resources, aviation, works, and housing sectors accounts for N1.32tn. To achieve this, the government plans to attract private sector investments, following the directive to increase private sector involvement in infrastructure provision.

The budget also earmarks N534bn for social investments and poverty reduction programs. The government aims to spend N10.26tn on non-debt recurrent expenditure, N8.25tn on debt servicing, N243bn on sinking funds, and N8.70tn on capital expenditures.

Despite fiscal challenges, President Tinubu highlighted the commitment to meeting debt obligations, projecting a budget deficit of N9.18tn in 2024. The deficit will be financed by new borrowings, privatisation proceeds, and drawdowns on multilateral and bilateral loans.

The President called for Public Private Partnership arrangements to finance critical infrastructure and invited the private sector to contribute to national development.

In response, lawmakers praised the budget’s attempt to reduce the deficit, emphasizing increased capital expenditure. The National Assembly is set to scrutinize the budget, aiming for passage by December 31.

However, opposition parties, including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party, criticized the proceedings in the National Assembly, accusing the APC government of promoting Tinubu’s ‘illegitimate’ presidency.

The government aims to boost tax revenues, targeting an increase in the revenue-to-GDP ratio from less than 10% to 18%. The Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Wale Edun, emphasized realistic budget assumptions and a reduction in reliance on borrowings.

In summary, the 2024 budget reflects the government’s focus on critical sectors, infrastructure development, economic growth, and fiscal responsibility, while sparking political debates and criticisms from opposition parties.


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