•N500bn For School Feeding Upon Immunisation •N63.3bn For Subsidy •N39.88bn For Oil Exploration In The North
In Its N6trn Budget For The 2016 Fiscal Year, The Fg Proposes N500billion For Social Welfare With A Phased Pruning Of The Workforce
Hard times await Nigerian workers, as the Federal Government is set to prune its workforce in the MDAS to accomplish what it refers to as more efficiency without compromising effectiveness.
This is one of the hard facts revealed in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and the Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) for the 2016, 2017 and 2018 financial years for consideration and approval by the National Assembly. The MTEF reads in part: “Government will, in the near-to-mediumterm, continue to prune the size of the Federal Government and its MDAs to more efficient levels without compromising efficiency and effectiveness. Over the medium term, however, government will revisit the need to rationalise the agencies of government, and strategically implement relevant provisions”.
Under the proposed budget size of N6.04 trillion, Buhari has proposed the sum of N500 billion for the social welfare intervention programmes such as school feeding, conditional cash transfer to the most vulnerable in society and post-NYSC grant.
According to the document, which was addressed to the Senate President, Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki, the Federal Government would collaborate with state governments to institute a well-structured intervention programme.
In the area concerning children, the document, however, disclosed that under the social welfare programme, evidence of immunisation would be required from parents.
The documents explain further that: “N500 billion has been provisioned in the 2016 Budget as social investments for these programmes. These interventions will start as a pilot scheme, and work towards securing the support of donor agencies and our development partners in order to minimise potential risks.
“A phased social welfare programme will be created for a larger population of the poorest and most vulnerable Nigerians upon the evidence of children’s enrollment in school and evidence of immunisation,” it read.
Similarly, the budget sum of N63.29 billion was proposed for subsidy.
Meanwhile, the sum of N150 billion is arrears of 2015 subsidy on domestic consumption.
This is even as the Federal Government has proposed the budget sum of N39.88 billion for oil exploration in the North.
However, the budget sum of N20 billion was proposed for the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP).
The recovered misappropriated funds, amounting to N350.33 billion, was injected into the 2016 Budget.
Meanwhile, the document disclosed that the Federal Government would spend the sum of N1.31 trillion to service domestic debt next year, while the sum of N54.5 billion would be used to service foreign debt.
However, the document revealed that the Federal Government would borrow the sum of N1.84 trillion in 2016.
From the above figure, the sum of N635.88 billion would come from foreign borrowing, while the sum of N200 billion would be sourced locally.
The document explained the guiding principles of the 2016 Budget.
“Fiscal deficit is targeted at not more than 2.16 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) – that is about N2.22 trillion in nominal terms. Revenue estimates are guided by the reality of actual revenues, prudence and purpose in the allocation of resources.
“Strategic priorities focus on human and infrastructure development emphasis on agriculture, education, health, road maintenance, security and water supply, and defence. Emphasis on allocated efficiency by ensuring value for money through prioritisation as conceptualised by the principle of zero-based budgeting system,” the document explained.
In a letter read by Saraki during yesterday’s Plenary, Buhari said that the submission was in line with the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007.
“In accordance with the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007, I forward here with the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and the Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) for the 2016, 2017 and 2018 financial years for consideration and approval of the National Assembly.
“The document is, upon approval of the National Assembly, expected to be the basis for the 2016 Appropriation estimate for presentation to the National Assembly,” President Buhari said in the letter.
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) had, on Monday, approved the two instruments for presentation to the National Assembly.
The Council predicated the proposed N6 trillion 2016 Budget on an oil benchmark of $38 per barrel with a 2.2 million crude oil per day production.
The two instruments would be slated in the Order Paper at last Wednesday’s Plenary for legislative action.
– Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja