Buhari lauds NASS for restoring the budget cycle to a predictable Jan. to Dec fiscal year
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Senate President Ahmed Lawan, Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, and others applauding the President after signing the budget
President Muhammadu Buhari has praised the National Assembly for ensuring detailed legislative review and passage of the 2020 Budget within two months.
President Buhari made the commendation when he signed the 2020 Appropriation Bill of N10.594trn into law at the State House, Abuja on Tuesday.
He particularly lauded the lawmakers for the patriotic zeal they adopted in the passage of the bill, saying that it had restored the nation’s budget cycle to a predictable January to December fiscal year.
“I am very pleased that the National Assembly worked uncommonly long hours in the interest of our people and the national economy to ensure detailed legislative review and passage of the Budget within two months”.
“This patriotic zeal adopted by the Ninth National Assembly has restored our budget cycle to a predictable January to December fiscal year”.
“Furthermore, in the twenty years since the return to civilian democracy, this will be just the fourth time that the Federal Budget was passed before the end of the previous year, and this is the earliest,’’ he said.
The President expressed the hope that the Finance Bill would be passed by the National Assembly very soon for presidential assent.
He maintained that the bill if passed, would support the funding and implementation of the 2020 Budget.
“The passage of the Finance Bill, which I am told will be done in the coming days, will also be a landmark achievement worthy of recognition, being the first time this has been done in the past twenty years.
“We look forward to receiving this bill shortly for Presidential Assent. Once passed into law, the Finance Bill will support the funding and implementation of the 2020 Budget. We shall sustain this tradition by ensuring that subsequent budgets are also accompanied by a Finance Bill”.
“For these achievements I must, therefore, congratulate and thank the Distinguished Senate President, the Right Honourable Speaker, and indeed, all members of the Federal Legislature for their commitment and support,’’ he added.
Buhari also thanked the Ninth National Assembly for supporting important legislation such as the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contract Amendment Act as well as the 2019 Finance Bill.
According to him, these laws are vital to the successful implementation of the 2020 Budget.
He noted with delight the renewed partnership, mutual understanding as well as collaboration between the executive and legislative arms of government.
“Now we are well-positioned to effectively implement the budget and deliver our promises to Nigerians.
“Businesses will also benefit as they are now in a position to plan more effectively.
“We have to sustain this harmonious working relationship. I expect that going forward, this will be the norm,’’ he said.
In view of this, the President directed that the 2021 budget estimates be submitted to the National Assembly by September next year.
The signing of the 2020 budget was witnessed by the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo; the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha; and the Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed.
Also present were the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan; and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, among other National Assembly leaders.