Budget 2016 will expire in May ―Senate

Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Senator Danjuma Goje, has said that the lifespan of the 2016 budget would not expire until May 5, 2017.

The Senator, who spoke to Senate correspondents, said that the new budget might be passed before May.

The Senate and the House of Representatives had earlier set a deadline of March for the passage of the budget.

But the Senator who spoke on Monday warned Heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies against the practice of “mopping up funds” at the close of the budget season.

According to him, there was no reason for heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) keep to the practice of “mopping up” of funds at the end of March, 2017 as according to him, the 2016
budget will only lapse on May 5, 2017.

He also said that the National Assembly may be compelled to extend the validity period of the budget if it was unable to pass the 2017 Appropriation Bill into law before May 5.

He stated that: “Last year, when we were producing this 2016 Appropriation Bill, we realized that at the end of each year, there were usually requests for an extension of the budget from the executive. To avoid that, we decided to incorporate this new thing.”

The Senator further explained: “In the 2016 Appropriation Act, which President Muhammadu Buhari signed into law, clause 11 of it says that “in line with the provisions of Section 318 of the Constitution of the
Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, as amended, this bill will run for a period of 12 months, starting from the day it is assented into law.

“President Buhari signed this bill into law on the 6th of May, 2016. This means this budget will run from that date up to the midnight of 5th of May, 2017. Unless of course if the Act is amended or altered as
deemed fit by the National Assembly.

“As far as the law is concerned, there is no need for any extension or mop up by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). The mop they usually do will now be illegal. Except the National Assembly, in
conjunction with the executive, amend this law, this is the position of the 2016 budget.

“We do not have to extend the 2016 budget. If May comes and there is need to extend, then we can do otherwise. I believe before that date, the 2017 budget will be passed. For now, this is the position of the
law.”

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