Budgets 2017 Budget Will Be Subject to Review- National Assembly

By Ikenga Chronicles December 27, 2016

The National Assembly  is set for a stormy session when it reconvenes in January, 2017 to look into the N7.29trn 2017 budget estimates recently presented by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Abdulrazak Namdas, in a statement on Monday, December 26 disclosed that lawmakers would ensure that the controversies, which nearly marred the 2016 budget, would not be replicated in the 2017 budget.

He added that each item in the N7.29tn budgeted for 2017 would be subjected to a thorough review by the National Assembly.

Recall that Buhari had on Wednesday, December 14, laid the estimates of the budget before a joint session of the Senate and the House in Abuja.

The budget of “economic recovery and growth” is 20 per cent higher than the N6.06tn budgeted for 2016.

Although the budget’s anticipated revenue of N4.9tn is higher than that of 2016 by 28 per cent, it has a deficit of N2.36tn, representing 2.18 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product.

The President told lawmakers that the deficit would be financed through a projected borrowing of N2.32tn, broken into N1.06tn (external) and N1.25tn (domestic).

While mobilising its members, the House spokesman said: “We have received the budget proposals from Mr. President. We now have a duty as lawmakers to look at the items one after another.

“The first step is that every member will get copies of the budget to study and this will assist them in pointing out key areas for the attention of the House.”

“As soon as we reconvene in January, work on the details of the budget will begin.”

Asked whether lawmakers would increase the budget size, Namdas replied that the size was already “huge.”

He added, “N7.29tn is a huge amount; increasing it is not likely the way to go.”

“However, the budget is the document eventually passed by the National Assembly.”

“Nigerians should be patient till we reconvene in January.”

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