The Senate has urged President Muhammadu Buhari and the led Federal Executive to ensure that the 2020 Appropriation Bill was ready before the lawmakers resume from their current recess towards at end of September.
The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, have been canvassing for Nigeria to return to the January-December budget cycle instead of the current system where budgets are announced haphazardly.
Lawan specifically told all the ministers-designate after their confirmation hearing last week, to cooperate with the federal parliament with a view to ensuring speedy submission, consideration and passage of the annual fiscal document, once they were inaugurated.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Adedayo Adeyeye, who also corroborated the position of the Senate President, said in an interview that the federal legislators are prepared to start work on the 2020 Appropriation Bill immediately they resume in September.
“We expect the executive to work on the budget on time so that they can lay it before the National Assembly on time, latest before our resumption in September or in the first week of October.
Once we receive it, we will start work on it and we should be able to pass it latest by the middle of December.
Now that the standing committees of the Senate and the House of Representatives have been constituted, the relevant ministries, departments and agencies of government should start engaging members of the committees in charge of their oversight, in the budget formulation process.
If they do this, the process of budget defence will not be a difficult matter by the time they come to defend their proposals, hence we can then revert to the January-December budget cycle again.
“When we achieve this, the budget will be fully implemented and we will see the result in the rapid social and economic growth and development of the country,” Adeyeye said.