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Reps to regulate FG’s budget deficit, borrowing in new law

Posted by on November 28, 2021 0


The House of Representatives is set to determine which expenditures in the budget of the Federal Government are to be funded with internally generated revenue or loans.

The House had on Thursday passed the National Budget Bill 2021 for a second reading.

The bill seeks to regulate how the Federal Government and its ministries, departments and agencies plan their finances every fiscal year.

It will also set deadlines for the laying of the appropriation bill by the President, consideration, and passage of the budget by the National Assembly, and its signing into law.

The legislation is titled, ‘A Bill for an Act to Regulate the Planning, Preparation, Passage and Execution of the Budget of the Federal Government of Nigeria; and for Related Matters.’

According to the lead debate presented by the sponsor, Abbas Tajudeen, a copy of which our correspondent obtained, the House would review how annual budgets are financed.

The document partly read, “Until recently, the revenue component of the annual budget is not given a serious look at. The President, while addressing the National Assembly during the annual budget presentation, only makes reference to the projected revenue for the purpose of funding the corresponding annual budget.

“To the credit of the Buhari administration, which introduced the Finance Bills in the past two years, the Finance Acts enacted by the National Assembly seem to be addressing the issues of revenue generation to finance the budget. This bill complements the Finance Acts, which defines why and how some budgetary allocations are funded i.e. revenue accounts, borrowed resources, extra-budgetary mechanisms, contingency funds and special funds.

“This bill defines the limits of deficit budgeting. It also defines the limits and purpose of Federal Government borrowing and the circumstances under which MDAs may carry over unspent funds to the following year.”

Tajudeen pointed out that a stand-alone budget law that addresses the processes and procedures of the Annual Appropriation Act “is the way to go.” Copyright PUNCH.

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