The Appropriation Bill is not a document that you can just write and say you are withdrawing it. – Senator Ali Ndume
Buhari Presents 2016 Budget To National Assembly
Contrary to speculations that the 2016 Appropriation Bill has been withdrawn from the National Assembly for certain “alterations”, the Federal Government maintains that such never happened.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, in a telephone chat with Dailytrust correspondent last night described it as a “big lie”.
There were speculations that President Muhammadu Buhari had written to the National Assembly requesting to withdraw the budget proposal.
He had on December 22 presented a budget estimate of N6.08 trillion to a joint session of the National Assembly.
The information minister emphasised yesterday that the budget was not withdrawn, saying: “It is a big lie.
There is nothing like that. We don’t know where they are getting that story”.
In the same vein, Senate Leader Mohammed Ali Ndume also told Daily Trust last night that the budget proposal was not withdrawn.
He said it was impossible to withdraw the budget, adding that it could only be adjusted, if need be, during its defence at the National Assembly.
“It is not a document that you can just write and say you are withdrawing it.
“The budget proposal that has been laid at a joint session of the National Assembly cannot just be withdrawn like that.
Budget proposal is not a document that is sacrosanct. You can adjust it and this is why it is before us.
During the budget defence, it can be adjusted if need be”, he said.
Ndume disclosed that the budget defence would start as soon as the lawmakers resume from their Christmas and New Year break on January 12.
“It is then that they can add or do whatever they want on it but it cannot be withdrawn like that”, he said.