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The President, Muhammadu Buhari has complained that adjustment of the budget by the National Assembly may affect its smooth implementation. He also said the legislature made cuts amounting to N347 billion in the allocations to 4,700 projects submitted to them for consideration and introduced 6,403 projects of their own amounting to N578 billion.
He said the injection of about N90 billion to the N8.83 trillion he submitted to the legislature would make it difficult for the government to realise its set objectives. He, however, stated that the executive would dialogue with the forthcoming ninth National Assembly so as to make life much better for Nigerians.
“Of course, some of these changes will adversely impact our programmes making it difficult for us to achieve the objectives of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.
“Although I will be signing this bill, it is my intention to engage the National Assembly to ensure we deliver on our promises.
“I will, therefore, be engaging with the leadership of the 9th National Assembly as soon as they emerge to address some of our concerns with the budget,’’ he said.
The president said he only signed the bill because he did not want to further slow down the pace of recovery of Nigeria’s economy. He said he would send “a supplementary and/or amendment budget” to the National Assembly to rectify the critical issues he raised.
He promised that his administration will look at how to improve the budget process in order to speed up its consideration as well as return the country to the January to December fiscal year timetable.
He appreciated the Ministers of Budget and National Planning, Finance, the budget office of the federation and all other stakeholders that played key roles in producing the document.