Minister of Finance, AGF, Akabueze shun Senate session on 2020 budget performance
Minister of Finance , Ahmed Zainab, Director General of Budget Office, Ben Akabueze and Accountant General of Federation (AGF), Ahmed Idris, on Thursday, failed to appear before the Senate Committee on Appropriation.
The trio were invited by the Committee led by Senator Jubril Barau to appraise the 2020 budget performance.
The Committee has to shelve the meeting as the those invited did not turn up.
Checks revealed that the session that was fixed for yesterday but aborted was the second time the top officials of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration would shun the Senate Committee on Appropriation.
The lawmakers had two weeks ago invited the Minister of Finance, Director General of Budget Office and Accountant General of the Federation for 2020 budget performance, but they declined the invitation.
Speaking on the development, Senator Barau expressed his disaffection as he maintained that the Committee was not only saddled with appropriations but the budget performance.
He said:” We have invited the Minister of Finance and Director General of Budget Office in order to have a brief about 2020 budget performance, this is the second time we are scheduling this meeting.
“We are here and we are supposed to hold this meeting two weeks ago, but we postponed the meeting at the instance of Minister of Finance and the Director-General of Budget Office.
“But, today still they are not able to come, we are supposed to start this meeting for 2 pm, but we are here fifteenth minutes after three, we are yet to see them. We don’t know the reason, we have been told that the Accountant General is on his way, but we have not heard anything from the Minister of Finance.
“We are going to adjourn the meeting and to find out why they are not here, we are going to reschedule the meeting for another date.
“The budget performance is something that is dear to us, very very important, it is part of the mandate of this committee.
” This committee is not only saddled with putting together the budget, it is not only concerned with the appropriation process but also the implementation of the budget because the budget means nothing, if not implemented.
“It is part of our mandate to always oversight what is going on about budget performance, particularly this time that we want the economy to be fully up and running after the lockdown due to Covid-19, but it is unfortunate that they are not here, we will find out why they are not here.”