The Nigerian senate has expressed worry over the non-submission of the 2017 Budget proposals of statutory corporations to the National Assembly. At a plenary session on Wednesday, the senate leadership stated that it was aware that the absence of penalties in the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act may have emboldened and encouraged this. It expressed concern that the Fiscal Responsibility Commission was failing in its responsibility through complacency.
Senators speak on the matter
Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, in his contribution to the matter, said that expenditure of these statutory corporations have to be stopped until their budget proposals are approved. Senator Sekibo, in contribution, urged the Senate to take stringent steps by giving the corporations an ultimatum to bring the budgets.
Senator Solomon Adeola noted that budgets of these statutory corporations are actually bigger than the entire 2017 Budget as it is about N10 trillion. Senator James Manager, however, charged the government and the legislature itself to do better.
Deputy Leader, Bala Na’allah guided the Senate that particular individuals have the responsibility to bring the budgets of the corporations. Several Senators agitated and disagreed with Senator Bala Na’Allah on his assertion.
Senate resolved to urge the Nigerian President as a matter of urgency to submit the budget of these agencies to the National Assembly in accordance with the provisions of Section 21 of the Fiscal Responsibility Act not later than two (2) weeks. Senate also resolved that all agencies and parastatals concerned should stop further expenditure in the current year until they comply with the Fiscal Responsibility Act and the Constitution.