Teddy Nwanunobi and Dyepkazah Shibayan, Abuja
The National Assembly on Wednesday stated that it will pass the 2016 Budget on Thursday, March 17.
Recall that the passage of the Budget was postponed earlier by the National Assembly due to discrepancies inherent in the N6.08 trillion proposed Budget.
Addressing a joint press conference jointly, chairmen of the Senate and House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje and Hon. Jibrin Abdulmumin, respectively, said that they will lay their reports at both chambers on Wednesday, March 16, after which it will be considered and passed the next day.
Goje said that a lot of hard work had been put into the 2016 Budget proposals.
He added that the two chambers have interacted with the various ministries, department and agencies (MDAs).
“The various sub committees of the two chambers have interacted with there various respective MDAs, the committees have produced their reports and all the Committees of the two chambers have fully submitted their reports.
“We have been working very hard round the clock at the same time at the weekends, and we will continue to do that until we finish the compilation of our reports.
“The essence of the press conference is to give Nigerians a progress report,” Goje said.
On his part, Jibrin said that efforts put into the reports from the various sub committees are to ensure that it aligns to the National Assembly guidelines.
“After all consultation with the leadership of the House and Senate, we can confirm to you that all things being equal we should be able to lay our report of the 2016 Appropriation Bill before the House and the Senate on the 16th of March and the consideration, hopefully should be done on the 17th.
“So, it is safe for us to conclude that the 2016 Appropriation bill will be passed on the 17th of March 2016.
“We are going to open, in the next few days, consultation with the relevant stakeholders in this process, most especially the executive arm of government. Particularly in the case of the House, we are going to engage the Minister of Budget and Planning, Minister of Finance, DG Budget Office.
“Most importantly, we are working hand-in-hand with the Senate, and things are looking (good). We are putting in our best on a daily basis,”Jibrin added.