2016 Budget impasse to be resolved this week —House of Reps

Posted by News Express | 25 April 2016 | 2,937 times

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The Spokesman of the House of Representatives, Abdulrazak Namdas, says the delay in the signing of the 2016 budget is not as a result of inaction by the National Assembly but because the President is yet to be convinced to sign the document.

He spoke during a Channels TV programme ‘Sunday Politics’, where he said that the document will be finalised during the week.

Mr Namdas had earlier in the week addressed newsmen informing them of the receipt of a letter from the President in which he outlined certain “grey areas” in the 2016 budget that needed to be addressed.

He added that the leadership of the National Assembly was set to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari over the standoff on the 2016 budget.

He noted also that the House of Reps could not have made any decision without the Senate and this informed a meeting which held between both chambers during the week.

“The principal officers of the two chambers have met over the document and they have also resolved to meet with the President so that together they can examine the grey areas and the interest of the President. Then we will come back to the chamber, reexamine the document this week and I believe that all these issues will be resolved amicably,” he said.

Mr Namdas declined to name the grey areas identified by President Buhari.

He cleared the air on the controversial Lagos-Calabar rail project, and the stance of the National Assembly on the issue if it emerges among the grey areas the President refereed to.

“We have not in any case removed the railway project. It is a document that was brought to us by Mr President. It is not in the first document and it is not in the amended version. But if it is among the grey areas the President wants us to talk about, we have assured Nigerians that it is a very nice project and we will take it,” he said.

He explained that the National Assembly has mainly been concerned about the need to follow due process in the approval of the project.

“All 360 of us have copies of this budget and there is no way a document would escape the first reading (and) escape the second reading only for us to find it at the committee level and (it is expected) of us to make use of it; that is not always the case,” he said.

Photo shows Reps Spokesman Abdulrazak Namdas.

Source: News Express

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