Senate to pass 2020 Appropriation Bill in December

The Chairman of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, said that the assembly would ensure the passage of the 2020 Appropriation Bill of N10.33 trillion in December.

Lawan who is also the President of the Senate said this at the two-day Joint National Budget Hearing on the 2020 Appropriation Bill in the National Assembly Complex on Wednesday.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Oct. 8, presented the budget proposal to a joint session of the national assembly with a call on the legislators to change the present budget cycle to January-December.

“We have set between the two chambers; and we have resolved that this time around, we must pass this budget before the end of Dec.

“We are hopeful that the budget will be passed before we go on Christmas break by God’s grace.

“And of course, I am glad to say that President Buhari had shown commitment to what the national assembly desires.

“This was seen when the government issued a statement asking ministers and heads of agencies not to travel without defending their budget; that is a total commitment to what we desire in the national assembly,” Lawan said.

 

He said that the public hearing on the 2020 appropriation was no doubt a special one because it was another important step in a bid to resolve the undesirable budget cycle.

The president of the senate also said that budget was critical to economic development and it was even more so for a nation like Nigeria where the economy needed continues stimulation.

“The importance of the budget proposal in national development cannot, therefore, be overemphasised. This is the reason why inputs have to be all-inclusive as we are now set to do.

“We understand that the budget proposal is about fiscal targets, resource allocation, public expenditure policy, productivity and efficiency.

“We also understand that the process is one of passage, mobilisation and execution.”

He further said that the lawmakers were determined to ensure that when the budget was passed, it would be properly implemented.

In his remark, Speaker House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, called on stakeholders to critically examine the document before the legislature exercised its full authority as provided for by the Constitution.

Gbajabiamila said that the budget of any country represented the blueprint of the direction its economy was going to take adding that it was the basis upon which everything else was built.

He said that the outcome of the hearing should reflect the true federal character of Nigeria.

Ng daily

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