The budget presentation ceremony in Nigeria by the President of the country to the National Assembly has left behind dust, where some members of the parliament suspect that the President of the country deceived them and they said that he handed them the 2024 budget resolution.
Truetells Nigeria reports that on Wednesday, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu presented his first budget proposal to the Joint Session of the Nigerian Parliament.
President Bola Tinubu said that the budget for next year is based on the forecast of selling one barrel of oil at 77.96 dollars, and producing an estimated 1.78 million barrels of oil daily. And one US dollar on the exchange rate of 750 naira.
The budget has decided to spend 9.92 trillion naira in the field of daily activities. Then there is 8.25 trillion naira for debt repayment, while major projects will get 8.7 trillion naira.
However, the members of parliament said that “there is nothing in a small box that the president bowed down and placed in front of the parliament hall.”
Hon Yusuf Shitu Galambi, a member of the Nigerian House of Representatives, told the BBC that there is no doubt that the president read his budget speech to them, but they did not see the budget statement.
He said, “The President read the budget for us, but yesterday the budget for each employee as usual was not brought.”
The member of parliament said, “We checked the book he kept but we didn’t see anything in it.”
Hon Yusuf Shitu Galambi, said that in the history of the Federal House of Representatives, what has been done this time has never been done, and the constitution does not say that it should be done.
He said, “We, the members of parliament, this thing is difficult for us, because it is something that has never been seen and never expected or dreamed of.”
“We think this thing is like a deception, since if it is not prepared, why should we come but I have finished everything, then we have to ask for more time until the time it will be finished, there is no rush in it.”
The member of parliament said that since the budget is empty now, they have to wait until the President brings detailed information on the budget.
However, on the other hand, some members of the House of Representatives said that there was no deception in the presentation of the budget by President Bola Tinubu to the House.
Hon Sada Soli Jibia, who is a member of the House of Representatives, said that normally, the House must go through some steps before distributing the budget copies so that every member of the House can see what they contain.
However, Sada Soli said that as of Friday, they have not seen the budget, as according to him, “Until now, it is being printed in the printing house where documents are printed by the parliament.”
He added that on Saturday the committee on the budget will meet with the leaders of the parliamentary committees, before each member of parliament will be given a copy of the budget.
The lawmaker alleged that the leaders of the National Assembly are covering up Tinubu’s act.
“They (leaders of the National Assembly) don’t want anyone to talk about it. Maybe they were not informed or were possibly aware of what was planned and they decided not to inform us,” he said.
When contacted, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Print Media, Abdulaziz Abdulaziz, said the allegation was aimed at misleading the public.
“It’s a nonsensical allegation aimed to mislead. The president is never expected to present the whole haul of heavy documents. What happened at the laying is like the presentation of dummy cheques at award ceremonies. The real thing always follows,” Mr Abdulaziz concluded.