President Buhari’s Budget Speech: My View

By Senator Dino Melaye

I notice that PMB is trying to whip up sentiments against the National Assembly again by alleging that the 2018 budget was padded.

What the President is authorised to do constitutionally is to present the National Assembly with a bill.  A bill is a work in progress and not the finished work. The reason the Constitution directs the Bill to be submitted to the N/A is that it expects the N/A to vet it and make inputs into such a Bill before passing it as the Appropriation Act. The National Assembly is not just expected to rubber stamp whatever Bill the President presents. If this was the norm then there would have been no need for the Constitution to direct that the Bill be submitted to the N/A in the first place.

Mr. President should therefore refrain from playing to the gallery and milking the naivety of the masses on the issue.

In any event, he reserves the prerogative of refusing to append his signature to the Bill passed if it meets his displeasure. He is also free to return the Bill to the N/A unsigned with a note indicating his areas of disaffection.

Therefore, Mr. President should halt his chicanery and smear campaign of the National Assembly.

I also ask, in the last three years of this administration: What has been the percentage of  implementation of capital budget?

The powers and authority of the National Assembly cannot be eroded by the presidency.

The National Assembly is not a department of the Presidency.

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