By Chibisi Ohakah, Abuja
Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, has urged federal government agencies and parastatals to submit their budget estimates on time to avoid zero-budget allocation at the end. He told some of the agencies including the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to submit their respective budgets to the national assembly or risk zero-budget allocation for the year, 2020.
Speaking during the passage of the Oil Production Sharing bill before the senate adjournment of plenary last weekend, Lawan noted that majority of the agencies of government were yet to submit their budgets, and may probably do so when it would be difficult for the lawmakers to do justice to it.
“The NDDC’s 2019 and 2020 budgets have not been brought here. The warning to NDDC is if they don’t bring the commission’s 2020 budget proposal in time, there won’t be money to spend anymore, because, government funds cannot be spent without appropriation,” he noted.
He also warned the Nigerian Communications Commission, Federal Capital Territory Administration and other agencies, who he said, were delaying the submission of their budget estimates, stressing that “the budget that we undertake at this time will be holistic.”
He pointed out that budget appropriation is the responsibility of the national assembly, and the lawmakers were not going to allow their responsibilities slip or be jeopardised because of the laxity of an agency.