Executive explains delay in signing 2018 budget

Timothy Choji, Abuja

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The Executive arm of the Nigerian government says President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to carry out a thorough review of the 2018 budget is responsible for the delay in signing the 2018 Appropriation Bill recently passed by the National Assembly.

Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, disclosed this in a chat with Journalists at the Presidential Villa on Monday, after meeting with President Buhari.

The National Assembly had raised the budget to N9,120, 334,988,225 from the N8.6 trillion presented by President Muhammadu Buhari, showing an increase of N508b on the 10th of May, 2018

According to Udoma, “the President is currently reviewing the budget and as you know, we have a minimum window of 30 days”

Pressed further on when the budget will be eventually signed, Udoma said” the President is currently reviewing it and as soon as he is through, he will sign it. That is what l can tell you for now,” he said.

The 2018 appropriation bill, the largest in the nation’s history, was premised on key revenue assumptions of oil price benchmark of $51 (an increase of $6 above the $45 proposed by the Presidency); but retains 2.3 million barrels per day and exchange rate of N305/$1USD.

Sectors regarded as critical namely: Power, Works and Housing, Defence as well as Transportation got the highest capital allocation of N1.090 trillion out of total sum of N2.873 trillion in the 2018 budget.

Aisha JM