The Senate on Thursday set conditions for the 2018 budget.
The Upper Chamber approved that if Nigeria would have a January to December budget cycle in 2018, the Federal Government must not roll over 60 percent of capital projects in the 2017 budget as being proposed.
This formed part of the discussion when its Joint Committee on Appropriation and Finance met on Tuesday with the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun; and Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, on the implementation of the 2017 Appropriation Act.
The Senate also warned the Executive against the selective implementation of projects “under the guise of completing priority projects.”
The committee said, “The Executive claimed it is awaiting the resolution of the National Assembly on external borrowing to enable them borrow externally to finance part of the capital component of the budget. This is because external debts have
“This is because external debts have longer tenures and lower interest rate,” this was part of its finding.
The panel said it was also observed that the Executive had decided to focus on completion of priority projects that were near completion instead of implementing the budget as passed.
Another observation by the panel was that efforts were being made to have the 2018 budget proposal laid before the National Assembly in October 2017, with the hope that the National Assembly would pass it in December for implementation to commence January 2018.
Some of the other observations were that “60 percent of the capital component of the 2017 budget may be rolled over to 2018, with the expectation that it will commence in January 2018.
“The shortfall in personnel costs of some agencies are as a result of either error in the budget or unapproved employment of staff. This is being investigated by the Executive with a view to addressing the problem.