By Bolaji Ogundele and Sani Onogu, Abuja
The stage appears set for Presidential assent to the N13.59 trillion 2021 Budget.
The Appropriation Bill has been transmitted to President Muhammadu Buhari from the National Assembly for action, it was learnt yesterday.
Already, the document is being studied by ministries, departments and agencies for final vetting.
Lawmakers passed the N13, 588,027,886,175 Bill during an emergency session convened for the purpose of passing the budget.
Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriation, Sen. Barau Jubrin, confirmed the transmission of the document yesterday.
The approved budget figure comprises Capital Supplementation of N1,060,751,051,650 and Capital Expenditure of N4,125,149,354,222; Statutory Transfer (N496,528,471,273); Recurrent Expenditure (N5,641,970,060,680) and three per cent as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate.
Senator Jubrin said: “The harmonised version of the Senate and House of Representatives of the 2021 budget has since been transmitted to the appropriate quarters at the presidency.
“As far as the National Assembly is concerned, we have transmitted the 2021 budget to the appropriate quarters. We don’t know when it would be signed into law.”
On whether the budget would be signed into law before the end of the year, the Senate Committee chair said the Presidency has the prerogative of signing the bill, which the National Assembly raised by N505.61 billion.
“It could be signed any time, we cannot dictate to them when the budget bill will be signed into law,” he said.
It is expected that the President will on or before Thursday assent to the bill to maintain the January – December Budget Cycle.
A Presidency source confirmed the receipt of the Bill last night. The source said it was transmitted on Boxing Day.
Efforts to get official confirmation from the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Jide Omoworare, were not successful.
Also, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives), Umar Ibrahim El-Yakub, said he could not confirm it.
However, a source hinted that the budget was still being vetted before it would be signed and finally made public.