Nigeria Senate increases 2018 budget estimate

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Shehu Sani, Senator representing Kaduna Central at the National Assembly, has revealed why the National Assembly chose to add N500 billion to the 2018 Appropriation Bill.

He said at the session that with a benchmark of 45 dollars per barrel at an exchange rate of N305 to a dollar in 2018, the budget would consolidate on the achievements of previous budgets to aggressively steer the economy to the path of steady growth.

President Muhammadu Buhari had presented the 2018 appropriation bill to a joint seating of the National Assembly in November 2017.

The presentation of the report was seconded by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, PDP, Edo South.

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The report had been tendered during the Tuesday plenary, and was considered and adopted on Wednesday.

Since then, the National Assembly had made promises in passing the budget but failed to meet up such deadlines.

At the House of Representatives, the appropriations committee also presented its report.

According to the report, N42.72 billion will be spent on security, N106.50 billion for the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, N15.7 billion is earmarked for Education, N10 billion for Judiciary while N44.20 billion for Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

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The Nigerian Senate on Tuesday finally laid the 2018 appropriation bill after postponing it in the past two different times.

N2, 203, 835, 365, 699 was budgeted for debt service as proposed while N190, 000, 000, 000 was budgeted for sinking fund for maturing loans.

He said at a total expenditure estimate of N8.612 trillion, the deficit amounted to 1.77 per cent of the nation's Gross Domestic Product, GDP, a 17.3 percentage point drop from 2.14 per cent deficit to GDP stated in 2017 budget.

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