The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asked the National Assembly to reject the N27.5 trillion budget proposed by President Bola Tinubu for the 2024 fiscal year.
The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Debo Ologunagba, said this in a statement on Wednesday.
PREMIUM TIMES reported that President Bola Tinubu on Wednesday presented a budget of N27.5 trillion for the 2024 fiscal year to a joint session of the National Assembly.
Mr Tinubu, while providing the breakdown of the budget said the 2024 appropriation was designed to address economic growth, human capital development, poverty reduction, and other crucial issues.
The president also explained that based on the parameters and fiscal assumptions, the recurrent expenditure will gulp N9.92 trillion, capital expenditure will get N8.7 trillion, the deficit is projected at N9.18 trillion and debt servicing will gulp N8.25 trillion
But the PDP, Nigeria’s main opposition party, asked the lawmakers to reject it.
“The PDP calls on the National Assembly pursuant to its Constitutional duty under Sections 80, 81 and 82 of the 1999 Constitution to reject the 2024 budget as presented and use its legislative powers to disassemble the budget and make provisions that are critical and pivotal to the growth of the economy and the welfare of Nigerians,” Mr Ologunagba said.
The PDP spokesperson said the proposed budget contained “false statistics” and was “heavily padded with duplicate items”.
He said many of the issues which the 2024 budget proposed to address will not be achieved if it is still based on a false statistical structure.
“The 2024 budget is filled with heavily padded figures, duplicated items and several false statistics including claims of a global increase in inflation rate as an excuse for an impending excruciating increase in taxes and interest rate to the detriment of our productive sector.
“It is clear that the 2024 budget as proposed with its heavy provisions for luxury appetite of the Presidency and All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders which is predicated and expected to be funded from multilateral and bilateral foreign loans and increased taxes on Nigerians, is designed to further mortgage our nation and strangulate the already impoverished Nigerians.
“The budget framework with respect to Recurrent Expenditure Vote of N9.9 trillion, Capital Expenditure Vote of N8.7 trillion and N8.25 trillion for debt services is unsustainable and unrealizable in view of the stated outstanding debt and proposed borrowing which is targeted mainly to finance consumption, luxury appetite and debt servicing.”
Mr Ologunagba said the “false statistics” in the proposed budget indicated that Mr Tinubu does not possess the capacity and qualities to develop the economic activities of the country.
“The lack of concrete and verifiable action plans to revive the manufacturing, energy, agricultural and education sectors which are the main drivers of any economy is a pointer that the Tinubu-led APC government is bereft of ideas and completely disconnected from the reality of life being faced by Nigerians.
“It is of grave concern that the President in the budget speech stated that his government has “adopted a Naira to US Dollar exchange rate of N750 per US Dollar for 2024”.
“This is a clear admission of failure, incapacity and lack of direction by the APC administration to manage and grow the economy in such a way as to strengthen the national currency, productivity and competitiveness in the global market.”
He also described the monetary policy of the federal government as a “deception”.
“It has further confirmed that the numerous promises by the President and officials of his government asserting a monetary policy to strengthen the Naira have been a deceptive ploy which is consistent with the APC in the past eight and half years.
“By adopting a defeatist N750 per US Dollar exchange rate, President Tinubu has further plunged our economy into the abyss, weakened our productive sector, wrecked the purchasing power of Nigerians and the capacity of the youths to be creative, recognizing that it will be almost impossible for Small and Medium Enterprises as well as Startups to access capital under such a suffocating budget.
“Every responsible leadership strives to work and defend its national currency. Unfortunately, the Tinubu-led government has surrendered our nation’s currency and pride to the whims and caprices of the so-called “market forces.”
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