Senate to pass 2021 Budget by December 3

• As Lawan asks Buhari to merge MDAs

The Senate has said it would pass the N13.08 trillion 2021 budget by December 3, 2020.

Chairman Senate Committee on Appropriations, Barau Jibrin, gave the disclosure at a press briefing.

President Muhammadu Buhari had last Thursday presented the budget before the joint session of the National Assembly.

The document which passed second reading on Thursday was referred to the Senate Committee on Appropriation by President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, with four weeks timeline to report back to the Senate.

Senator Jibrin further disclosed that between November 9 and 10, both chambers of the National Assembly would conduct public hearing on the budget.

“The various committees are expected to harmonize their reports from November 11 to 18 while the Senate Committee on Appropriation will compile all the reports from the committees from 19th November to December 2,” Jibrin stated.

President of the Senate, who revealed that the budget defence would commence next week urged President Buhari to give utmost consideration to merger of certain agencies to reduce cost of governance. He also asked his colleagues to take their statutory oversight functions very seriously to ensure strict implementation of the budget by Ministries, Department and Agencies.

“The responsibility of the National Assembly or Parliament is that whatever we appropriate is properly, economically and efficiently applied. This is an oversight function that we must continue to do.

“Before we pass the 2021 budget, we should be able to know how much of the 2020 has been implemented. This is because some projects need to be rolled over to 2021, and we need to know the extent to which they have been funded in the 2020 financial year,”

The President of the Senate who commended the MDAs for achieving between 50 and 75 percent implementation rates on capital projects across the country, however expressed concern over low remittance to Federation Account by certain revenue generating agencies.

“in the last three days, we’ve witnessed submissions raising issues about the budget estimates presented to us by Mr. President.

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“This is in continuation of our efforts to ensure the desirable cycle that we have taken the annual budget to (January – December) will be a legacy.

“This will be our legacy as the 9th National Assembly and the legacy of Mr President.

“We have been able to do this together and there’s definitely a difference in the implementation of the 2020 budget compared to the others.

“Some Ministries and projects have received up to 75 percent funding. There’s none that has received less than 50 percent.

“While this may not be exactly what we want, it is still an improvement and we will continue to urge the executive to implement the budget up to 100 percent.

“But I believe that we have seen the benefit of passing the budget in good time, and this is something that we will continue to do.

“Like all of us, I also have some observations. Firstly, I think our revenue generation, collection and remittances need to be better.

“There are many agencies of government t that are supposed to be generating revenues and they do so, but they don’t remit all that they are supposed to.”

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE

 

 

 

 

Senate to pass 2021 Budget by December 3

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