EYEAFRICA TV: Abuja, NIGERIA: Nigeria’s President Muhammed Buhari Wednesday signed his country’s 2018 Appropriation Bill into Law at the Presidential Villa in the capital, Abuja.
He said in his speech immediately after signing the bill that when he submitted the 2018 Budget proposals to the National Assembly on November 7, last year, he was hoping that the usual legislative review process would be quick, so as to move Nigeria towards a predictable January-December financial year, saying the importance of this predictability cannot be overemphasized.
President Buhari said while the Federal Government’s budget represents less than 10% of aggregate yearly expenditures in the economy, it has a very significant accelerator effect on the financial plans of other tiers of government, and even more importantly, the private sector, which, he said mostly operates on a January-December financial year.
Notwithstanding the delay this year, I am determined to continue to work with the National Assembly towards improving the budgeting process and restoring our country to the January-December fiscal cycle.
He said they intend to use the 2018 Budget to consolidate the achievements of previous budgets and deliver on Nigeria’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) 2017-2020. “It is in this regard that I am concerned about some of the changes that the National Assembly has made to the budget proposals that I presented. The logic behind the Constitutional direction that budgets should be proposed by the Executive is that, it is the Executive that knows and defines its policies and projects.”
Mr. Buhari said many of the projects cut are critical and may be difficult, if not impossible, to implement with the reduced allocation. Some of the new projects inserted by the National Assembly have not been properly conceptualized, designed and costed and will therefore be difficult to execute.