Finally: Senate Says 2016 Budget Will Be Ready On Friday
BEVERLY HILLS, April 26, (THEWILL) – The Senate has assured Nigerians that the 2016 budget will be ready for President Muhammadu Buhari’s assent on Friday.
This was declared by the Senate minority leader and leader of the G77 group, Godswill Akpabio, on Tuesday after the group’s meeting in Abuja.
The group is made up of first time senators from the three political parties of All Progressives Congress (APC), People's Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP).
Akpabio, who described the situation as embarrassing, revealed that the Senate was doing everything to correct all errors in the budget before Friday.
“The lingering issue on the budget is something that we feel is embarrassing to Nigeria, not just to the National Assembly as a whole,” he said.
“If we had a group like this, by now that issue would have been brought to an end. But just to reassure you that Mr President will have his budget. And we are doing everything possible to rejig the details of the 2016 budget for Mr President to sign as soon as possible.
“And we hope we can finish that by this Friday, so that things can kick-start in the Nigerian economy.
“The intention of the group is not to confront the executive arm of government but to deepen democracy, ensure the sanitisation of the Senate, shore up the image of the Senate and give the President the needed support.”
THEWILL recalls that President Buhari had refused to give his assent to the 2016 budget on the grounds that the National Assembly had mutilated the bill as sent by the Executive with some major projects affected.
Some of the capital projects affected include the N60 billion Lagos-Calabar rail project, which was allegedly removed by the lawmakers; reduction of Lagos-Ibadan Expressway by N24 billion; reduction of Second Niger Bridge by N3.9 billion; Benin-Sagamu Road slashed by N800 million; Kano-Maiduguri-Ngala Rail cut by N260 million, among others.
Story by David Oputah