Deputy President of the Senate, Ovie Omo-Agege has assured that the National Assembly is determined to pass the 2022 budget before the year runs out.
The House of Representatives has also disclosed that it will be targeting December 16, 2021 to do final passage of the 2022 appropriation bill currently being processed.
Senator Omo-Agege made the disclosure while hosting his former classmates from the Nigerian Law School Class of ’86 (The Centennial Class) in Abuja, led by Class Captain Oladipo Okpeseyi (SAN).
President Muhammadu Buhari had last Thursday presented the 2022 budget of N16.3 trillion to a joint session of the National Assembly.
According to Omo-Agege, early approval and signing of the appropriation bill into law will ensure planning, bring about enhanced productivity and efficiency in the management and application of the nation’s resources.
He explained that Nigerians are the ultimate beneficiaries of the return to the January to December budget cycle, stressing that this will guarantee full implementation of the economic, infrastructural, social investments and other developmental programmes contained in the budget.
“The budget process is ongoing. In the next 30 days, we will conclude it and pass it before we go on Christmas break, sometime in December 16,” he said.
Speaking on a bill sponsored by his colleague that seeks to increase the number of law school campuses in Nigeria from six to 12, the federal legislator emphasised the need to reach out to all stakeholders to determine its acceptability or otherwise.
His words: “I want to thank you for the initiative you have taken on this moot court. It’s a great idea, especially for trained advocates. I really don’t see how you can hone your skills if you are not given the opportunity and privilege to have facilities like that.”
The House of Representatives had earlier on Thursday passed the bill for the second reading stage, after two days of extensive debate on its general principles.
Making the planned target public during a meeting of the Appropriations Committee of the House, chairman of the panel, Hon. Mukhtar Betara
said the committee will expectantly lay its report on December 14 for the House’s consideration on the 15th, and subsequent third reading and passage on the 16th, advising committee members to be diligent.
“We’re going to be more careful on recurrent expenditure. No money should be taken from recurrent to the capital expenditure, and no money from capital to recurrent, unless where it is absolutely necessary,” Betara said, advising members to guide the subcommittees they may be posted to, as the process of budget defence commences,’ he said.