Indications emerged at the weekend that the Nigerian government has identified six sectorial pillars and 25 priority areas for the 2016 budget.
Consequently, all ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) have been directed to ensure that their programmes and projects for the 2016 fiscal year are keyed into the priority areas identified by government.
The six pillars upon which the 2016 budget are to be built on are: Economic, social development, infrastructure, governance, environment, state and regional development.
In the economic sector, it was learnt that the 2016 budget will factor in seven components: Economic diversification, sustainable reforms in oil and gas, real sector development, strengthening national planning and statistical system, reforming the agriculture sector, tourism and creative industries development and public financial management
According to the template given to the MDAs, under social development sector, the 2016 budget will focus on five key areas. These priority areas are: Social protection initiatives, development of education infrastructure and critical equipment, capacity building of technical staff, free education at tertiary level for science, technical, mathematics and teacher education, pro-poor health care services and infrastructure development and develop infrastructure and promote grassroots sports.
In the budget template, the Federal Government is focusing on four key priority programmes in the infrastructure sector. Power is top in the 2016 budget. Government is paying premium to electricity generation, transmission and distribution.
The three other priority programmes in the infrastructure sector are: Gas supply pipeline network, road construction and rehabilitation programme and rail network expansion and modernisation.
Under governance, the 2016 budget template captures five priority programmes. These are: Programme for the strengthening of the national security service, anti-corruption, public service reform, judicial services reform programme and strengthen global partnership for sustainable development.
The focus in the environment sector is on three priority programmes: National environment management, climate change and waste-to-wealth
In the budget template, the priority programme for the state and regional development is on National Programme for the Improvement of Inter-Governmental Relations and cooperation at all tiers.
To ensure compliance with the 2016 Budget template, the Federal Government set up a technical help desk at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa to conduct clean-up check and integrity test for all the MDAs.
It was also learnt that all the MDAs met with officials of the Budget Office, Ministry of Budget and National Planning, between December 2 and 6, on the 2016 Budget.
Bilateral discussions between the Ministry of Budget and National Planning with the MDAs will start this week.