Just In: National Assembly sends 2020 budget to presidency

The National Assembly has passed on the 2020 budget to the presidency for final assent. According to reports, this was confirmed Thursday night by Umar el-Yakub, the Senior Special Assistant to the president on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives).

In his reply to a question as to whether 2020 Appropriation Bill has been transmitted to President Muhammadu Buhari and when, he said “Correct, today.”

Mr el-Yakub went further to say: “And I am sure you know that the President will take his time to look at it all through before assent.”

On 6 December, 2019, the presidency disclosed that the president together with the Federal Executive Council would subject the 2020 budget passed by the National Assembly to scrutiny on Thursday.

Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, disclosed that the scrutiny would enable them detect if the lawmakers had padded the estimates in the budget.

In passing the 2020 Appropriation Bill to law on 5 December 2019, the two Chambers had upped the total estimates from the N10.33 trillion proposed to N10.6 trillion. They, however, added a clause to the document, stating that the budget would become operational from 1 January, 2020, restoring the country to the January to December budget cycle.

In the new total sum of N10,594,362,364,830, the National Assembly jacked statutory transfer up from the N556.7 billion proposed to N560,470,827,235.

It also increased debt service from N2.45 trillion to N2,725,498,930,000, slashed recurrent (non-debt) expenditure from N4.88 trillion to N4,842,974,600,640; and raised development fund for capital expenditure from N2.14 trillion to N2.465,418,006,955.

The National Assembly increased its own budget from N125 billion to N128 billion as part of the N264 billion increment.

Abeeb Olalekan

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