N’ASSEMBLY ALONE CANNOT PAD BUDGETS – NA’ABBA



The former Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt Hon Ghali Na’Abba, has declared that there can be no padding of the national budget without the connivance of the executive arm of government.
Na’Abba made this revelation while fielding questions from journalists in Kaduna, yesterday.
He also noted that it was the constitutional responsibility of the National Assembly to make appropriations on the budget submitted to it by the executive.
“I expect that after 16 years of the return to democracy, Nigerians would understand the responsibilities of the National Assembly.
“For some weeks now, there has been controversy over what is called padding. As far as I am concerned, the National Assembly has the responsibility to pass the budget, approve it and allow the executive arm to execute it.
“To my understanding, where the issue being referred to as padding comes into play is a situation where some members go behind and add items of expenditure to what had already been agreed upon, for either stealing the funds or doing whatever they feel like doing with it.
“But this stealing of fund is not possible without the active connivance of some members of the executive arm,” he stated.
The former Speaker said that, so far, all the “noise” emanating from the Green Chamber were mere allegations as no investigation had been conducted in the matter.
This is just as he faulted the calls for the Speaker’s resignation.

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