BUDGET: Buhari speaks, gives Osinbajo go ahead to sign
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 13, 2017,
Jun 13, 2017, 17:17
There are speculations that the delay in signing the budget since its transmission by the National Assembly on May 19 was a deliberate ploy to ensure that Osinbajo does not assent to the Appropriation Bill.
The statements have since been denied.
Osinbajo however said he delayed the signing of the budget because of the disagreements the Executive had about the changes introduced to the document by the Legislature.
This was disclosed in a statement issued by the President's Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu on Monday, June 12, 2017. And, as I indicated earlier, we will be returning to the National Assembly to seek upward adjustments by way of virements in relation to a number of critical projects which have received inadequate provision in the budget just passed by the National Assembly.
The president has been away from the country on medical leave in London since May 7, 2017, with Osinbajo acting in his absence.
A total of N2.98 trillion was earmarked for recurrent non-debt expenditure, while N2.17 trillion was earmarked for contribution to the development fund for capital expenditure exclusive of capital expenditure in statutory transfers.
He said that over the 2017-2020 plan period "we are focusing on five key execution priorities", namely: stabilising the macroeconomic environment; agriculture and food security; energy sufficiency in power and petroleum products.
Also present were the Senate Leader Ahmad Lawan, House Leader Femi Gbajabiamila, Chairman, Senate Committee Chairman on Appropriation Danjuma Goje, Chairman, House Committee Chairman on Appropriation, Minister of Finance Kemi Adeosun, her counterpart in the Ministry of Budget and National Planning Udoma Udo Udoma, and a number of government officials.
"When is it going to be right?"
The acting president noted that the economy was already signaling a gradual recovery as growth was headed towards positive territory. We have been clamouring for a harmonised fiscal year, but end up elongating it.