For the third time, the Presidency has withdrawn the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Strategy Policy (SP) Paper from the National Assembly yesterday, following the dwindling price of the crude oil at the international market, it was reliably gathered.
The MTEF is the foundations on which the budget is built and its withdrawal would enable the Federal Government adjust the oil benchmark so as to reflect the current realities in the new MTEF/Strategy Policy Paper to be presented to the National Assembly.
The dwindling oil price has pressured Federal Government oil revenue, forcing it into adopting austerity measures last year.
The withdrawal will once again delay the 2015 budget which Nigerians had doubt of its quality due to the electioneering for 2015 elections that is taking its toll on legislative duties and executive functions.
However, the N4.357 trillion budget proposal scaled through second reading on the floor of the House of Representatives and was referred to the House Committees on Appropriation, Finance and other standing committees for further legislative input.
These committees are expected to engage the ministry, departments and agencies from next week for the defense of their budgetary proposals.
In the bid to shore-up revenue for the year 2015, the lawmakers urged the Federal Government to increase revenue from non-oil sector and financial institutions to release funds to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the bid to boost the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).