This was the sentiment expressed by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje, and his House of Representatives counterpart, Jibrin Abdulmumin at a briefing on Tuesday, February 9, 2016.
The National Assembly has said that the 2016 budget proposal has too many errors and as such can’t be passed as it is.
This was the sentiment expressed by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje, and his House of Representatives counterpart, Jibrin Abdulmumin at a briefing on Tuesday, February 9, 2016, Vanguard reports.
“We are here in connection with the ongoing processing of the 2016 Budget because these two committees are the ones saddled with the production of the final copies of the budget that would be passed by the National Assembly for onward submission to Mr President for his assent and subsequent implementation,” Goje said.
“We want to remove all ambiguities, we want to remove all paddings. We want to produce a budget that is in line with the constitutional provision. During the budget defence, a lot of issues based on the padding of the budget, arising from over-bloated overheads and in some instances cases of over-bloated personnel cost.
“But generally, there has been a lot of issues. The appropriation committee would look at these issues after the whole budget defence and do a very thorough work aimed at doing a proper clean-up of the budget.
“So in summary, the time-table for passage of the budget is no longer realistic because as appropriation committees of both chambers of the National Assembly, we need additional time to do a thorough job for the 2016 budget.”
“So we can pass a budget that is implementable and also acceptable to Nigerians. It is no longer realistic because we need sufficient time to pass a comprehensive budget,” Jibrin said mirroring Goje’s sentiment.
“The President is an individual, the budget runs in thousands of pages, the President will not be able to go through it page by page,” he added.
The budget has been the centre of controversy since it was reported missing from the Assembly premises in January.
Senate President, Bukola Saraki later said that two different versions of the document had been submitted to the legislative house.
The controversy has been further compounded by strange and ridiculous figures which were attached to mundane items in the budget.
Meanwhile, Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole has said that the figures in the proposal are different from those he submitted to the budget office.