Eventful In Partnership with FirstBankAfter been shadowed by allegations of padding for sometime, the President Mohammadu Buhari’s 2016 budget has finally been passed into law but slashed to N6.06trillion by the National Assembly on Wednesday, March 23.
This was sequential to a motion by the Chairman, Joint Committee on Appropriations, Senator Danjuma Goje, seconded by Senator Andy Uba, thus reducing the President’s N6.07 trillion proposal by N17 billion.
The 2016 budget had been trailed by allegations of padding which delayed its passage. BUDGET 2016 The highlight is as follows: N351bn for statutory transfers, N1.4trn for debt service, N2.6trn for recurrent expenditure, and N1.5trn as capital expenditure. The N17 billion reduction in the aggregate expenditure of the budget was taken from overhead votes component of the N2.65 trillion recurrent expenditure of the budget which has now been reduced to N2.646 trillion. N2.2trillion fiscal deficit was retained. Also retained, were the parameters of $38 per barrel oil price bench mark for the budget, 2.2million barrels of oil production per day, exchange rate of N197 to a US dollar and deficit GDP of 2.14 per cent.
The Presidency, commending the National Assembly for adopting the budget, said the Executive was adequately involved in the resolution of controversy that arose from the budget before it was actually passed.
However, in the approved budget, the National Assembly ensured that only the N500billion Intervention fund was allowed to scale through untouched as other components in the budget were cut because it bordered on giving relief to the poor.
It was recalled that Mr. President had on Tuesday, December 22, 2015, presented before a Joint Session of the National Assembly, a total budget estimate of N6, 077,680,000,000. Of the total sum presented by Buhari, N351,270,000,000 is for statutory transfers, N1, 475,320,000,000 is for Debt Service, N2,648,600,000,000 is for recurrent(non-debt), while N1,845,540,000,000, inclusive of N157,150,000,000 Capital expenditure in Statutory Transfers and N86,000,000,000 as interest on Capitalised Loans, is for contribution to the Development Fund for Capital Expenditure for the year ending 31st day of December, 2016.