Senate approves over N214b for President Buhari

By Admin on 30/11/2016

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The Senate, yesterday, added N33billion to President Muhammadu Buhari’s ‘Virement’, even as it approved request to amend the 2016 budget by re-assigning funds initially appropriated for special intervention programme, to address urgent recurrent and capital items.

 This however, is in contrary to opinions in some quarters that the Senate would not approve the N180bn request by President Muhammadu Buhari for the virement of funds appropriated in the 2016 Appropriation Act; the upper legislative chamber on Tuesday dazzled Nigerians by not only approving the said amount; but also increased the virement to the tune of N213,821,671,494.

The Senate also approved additional request of N300m appropriated in the 2016 Budget under the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) for the construction of 132 KVA substation at Gwaram, Jigawa state.

Buhari had in August written the National Assembly,  seeking to vire N180.8 billion from N500 billion originally meant for the administration’s special intervention programme to fund capital and recurrent items in various ministries, departments and parastatals. In giving approval, the Senate increased the figure from N180 billion to N213 billion. The House of Representatives had earlier raised its version of the amendment to N208 billion. Both chambers are expected to harmonise.

The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, noted the unconstitutionality of the president’s request, saying President Buhari should have proposed a supplementary budget, instead of“virement,” which he said was “military terminology.” Regardless, he urged the Senate to approve the request.

 

In his remarks, Senate President Bukola Saraki said the approval underscored the smooth relationship between the Executive and the Legislature. He added that the approval would ensure funding for capital projects especially.

 

Presenting the report on Tuesday, the Chairman, Committee on Appropriations, Senator Danjuma Goje (Gombe Central) said, “the committee met with its House counterpart and deliberated on the course of action in order to abridge time. And also jointly had an interactive meeting with the affected MDAs on the virement, that is, the source of the funds and the expenditure MDAs in the Budget to clarify the need for the virement.”

 

 

 

 

Posted on November, 30 2016

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