• As Buhari Signs  Bill Into Law
  • Eyes Sept date for 2021 budget

BY EDMOND ODOK, ABUJA – With President Muhammadu Buhari keeping his administration’s promise of returning the Federal Government annual budgeting circle to the January – December timeframe on Tuesday, the stage is now set for the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed to unveil details of the 2020 budget.

The Public Presentation of the approved FGN 2020 budget by Mrs Ahmed will hold on Thursday, December 19, 2019 in Abuja.

A statement by the Director General, Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze, said the presentation is slated  for the Main Auditorium, Federal Ministry of Finance Complex, Central Business District (CBD) by 9am prompt.

Since the inception of Nigeria’s democratic dispensation in 1999, this is the fourth, but the earliest time that the Appropriation Bill has been signed into law in December

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Tuesday signed the 2020 Appropriation Bill of N10,594,362,364,830 with the final budget document capturing the National Assembly (NASS)’s increase of the total amount by over N260 billion from N10.334 trillion to N10.594 trillion.

Speaking at the occasion, the president, who praised the lawmakers for their patriotic zeal and speedy passage of the budget, however, expressed the hope that they would pass the Finance Bill for his assent within the shortest time.

While charging all Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) to ensure the effective implementation of the 2020 budget, President Buhari assured that the administration will work hard to fund the 2020 budget.

Similarly, he directed that the 2021 budget estimates should  be sent to the National Assembly by September 2020 in order to build on the gains having the January to December budget circle.

According to the 2020 budget breakdown, N560.47 billion is for statutory transfers with N2.7 trillion earmarked for debt servicing.

Others include over N4,842 trillion for Recurrent Expenditure; N2,465 trillion for Capital spending; Fiscal Deficit takes N2.28 trillion with deficit/GDP at N1.52 per cent.

Though maintaining Nigeria’s daily oil production rate at 2.18 million per barrel, the 2020 budget has raised the Oil Benchmark Price to 57 dollars per barrel from the 55 dollars initially proposed by the Executive.

However, as proposed by the executive, the signed document retained inflation rate at 10.81 per cent with the official exchange rate kept at N305 to a dollars.

Personalities who witnessed the budget signing at President’s mini-conference room included Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; Senate President, Ahmad Lawan; and Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.

Also at the Ceremony were Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed and Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina among other presidential aides.

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