The Senate has approved and passed a 2022 supplementary budget of N819 billion.
The passage comes a week after President Muhammadu Buhari in a letter to the National Assembly, asked that the additional budget of N819,536,937,813 be approved by the lawmakers.
The president said the entire amount is for capital expenditure and became necessary due to the devastation caused by floods on farmlands and road infrastructure.
Nigeria, he explained, witnessed the worst flood incidents in 2022, which has caused massive destruction of farmlands with risks of food insecurity.
He said the disaster affected several roads and other infrastructure across the 36 states of the federation which are critical for the movement of goods and services.
Mr Buhari also informed the lawmakers that the supplementary budget will be financed “through additional domestic borrowings.”
“This will raise the budget deficit for 2022 to N8.17 trillion and deficit to GDP ratio to N4.43 per cent.”
The supplementary budget was approved and passed after the Senate considered the report of its Committee on Appropriations.
Presenting the report, the chairman of the committee, Barau Jibril (APC), Kano), said having examined the impacts of the floods across the country in 2022, need for an additional budget for infrastructural development became necessary.
He said the committee resolved that the additional budget will be allocated among four ministries, Agriculture, Works, FCTA and Water Resources.
A breakdown of the allocation:
- Agriculture – N69 billion.
- Works – N704 billion.
- FCTA – N30 billion.
- Water Resources – N15.5 billion.
In his contribution, Borno senator Ali Ndume asked that the additional budget be included in the 2023 budget rather than the 2022 budget. This, he said, is more realistic and provides more time for contractors to work on ongoing projects.
“Although the projects are 80 per cent complete, if this budget is approved, we have only about 90 days to spend the money and complete the projects,” he said. “Why not add this N819 billion into the 2023 budget so that way we have 12 months to carry out the project…”
He was however countered by Lagos senator Adeola Olamilekan, who said the supplementary budget is a provision for emergency as a result of the natural disaster witnessed in the year.
“Everything that happened, happened in 2022,” he said. “It just shows how sensitive this government is.”
The Senate thereafter approved the additional budget of N819 billion which will run till 31 March.
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