The Senate has shifted the passage of the 2024 President Bola Tinubu’s ‘Renewed Hope’ budget.
The Appropriation Committee had initially planned to present the 2023 budget to the Senate on Thursday while the passage was billed for Saturday, December 23, 2023.
However, many of the committees were unable to meet the Wednesday deadline stipulated by the committee in its timetable.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Senator Olamilekan Adeola as at 11:45 pm on Wednesday disclosed that the committee had attended to 48 committees for their respective committee budget defence.
Senator Adeola said, “We have succeeded in attending to 48 committees to date and tomorrow we will be here to receive 20 more additional committee reports by tomorrow by the Grace of God.
“Anyone who couldn’t present his or her report by tomorrow should forget it.
“We will have the grounds to say we gave enough time and anyone who falls would be as a result of their negligence.”
President Bola Tinubu presented a budget of N27.5tn to a joint section of the National Assembly on November 29, 2023, in Abuja.
The President pegged the budget deficit for the 2024 fiscal year at N9.18tn and explained that the deficit represented 3.88 per cent of Nigeria’s gross domestic product.
“The N9.18tn deficit is lower than the N13.78tn deficit recorded in 2023 which represents 6.11 per cent of GDP.
“The deficit will be financed by new borrowings totalling N7.83tn, N298.49bn from privatisation proceeds and N1.05tn drawdown on multilateral and bilateral loans secured for specific development projects,” Tinubu had stated.
On December 1, 2023, the Senate passed the N27.5tn budget for a second reading.
In a document sighted by our correspondent, 54 committees have submitted and defended their reports.
Similarly, 11 committees have submitted their reports but have yet to defend their budget.
However, the Senate Committee on Defence, headed by the former Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, and the Senate Committee on Poverty Alleviation and Social Welfare led by Senator Idiat Adebule ( APC, Lagos West) were yet to submit their report.
The PUNCH reports that the minister of Defence, Abubakar Badaru, appeared before the joint committee of both the Senate and House of Representatives on December 13 to defend its N78.6bn 2024 budget.
The Senate also on Thursday adjourned the plenary till Friday 29th, 2023.
Adjourning the plenary, the Deputy Senate President, Jibrin Barau, appealed to committees to submit their reports to the Appropriation committees.
He said, “The plenary is hereby adjourned till December 29th, 2023 at 10 am prompt.”
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