Kwara wins $16.9m in SFTAS achievements for 2019/2020

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…gets N795m PAYE refunds; explains review of budget figure

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By Wole Adedeji, Ilorin

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The Kwara State Government on Tuesday said it has won $16.9m 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.
Government statement issued by the State Ministry of Finance and Planning said 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 (IVA) that had earlier visited Kwara State.
The DLIs, the statement added, included improved financial reporting and budget reliability; increased citizens engagement in budget process; strengthened internally generated revenues (IGR); biometric and BVN used to reduce payroll fraud.
Also, the rating index 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 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 $5m in November,”.
“Of the balance of $11.9m, the state has received additional $9.4m on Monday January 4, and awaits the balance of $2.5m later in the month”, the statement added.
Government meanwhile, has explained why it jerked up the budget estimates from N123bn to roughly N135bn, representing an increment of about N11bn widely reported on Tuesday.
The breakdown of the reviewed budget, according to the statement, included a review of the opening balance from N13.6bn to N19bn based on funds mopped up from across the MDAs; VAT from N14.6bn to N15.4bn.
The Pay As You Earn (PAYE) from N5.6bn to N5.8bn; administrative charges from N194.6m to N346.6m; Land Use charge from N124.8m to N174.8m; SFTAS capital receipt from N3.8bn to N6.1bn; and termed loan from N4bn to N6bn.
The Ministry also announced the receipt of N795,327, 222:21 as the third tranche of the 25% refund of unremitted PAYE from federal government’s MDAs domiciled in Kwara State.

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