By Umar Muhammad Puma and Christiana Ekpa
Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), has described the calls by the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), to the opposition lawmakers in the National Assembly to
boycott budget presentation as totally out of place.
President Muhammadu Buhari is expected to present the 2019 budget estimates to the joint session of the National assembly today.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after rising from a two-hour closed meeting with the APC caucus in the House of Representatives, the SGF,
While denying that his visit was in connection with president Muhammadu Buhari’s scheduled visit to the National Assembly today, or the ongoing strike by the workers, the SGF, stated that laying the budget before a joint session of the legislature is constitutional
requirement that the President will fulfill.
“I am not aware but it is also going to be totally out of place to boycott. This is a national responsibility. The president has to lay the budget as demanded by the constitution and he is going to do exactly that”, he said.
Probed further if he was at the National Assembly as a result of the industrial unrest, he said “no, no, it has nothing to do with the strike action. We were just discussing party matters, which is germane and important to us”.
“I have come to attend a caucus meeting with members of the House of Representatives of the All Progressives Congress (APC)
“I have been attending caucus meetings with them; because this is a larger House that is why I came to the National Assembly. It is a continuation of dialogue with our members”, the SGF added.
Explaining further he said: “We are preparing for elections, we have to come and dialogue and strategise, and plan for the elections. Very soon, they are going on recess and so, we have to plan on what they
will do during the course of the recess in terms of deepening democracy and preparing our party for the elections”.
Asked if the APC is not worried by the defections of so many of its Reps members, Mr Mustapha reacted saying “there hasn’t been any
defections; the major ones happened and we have gotten out of that. We are just on the part of growth now. We have received so many members”.
While saying that the presidency has nothing to say regarding the striking legislative workers due to lack of facts at its disposal, the SGF however revealed that adequate releases have been made to the National Assembly from the 2018 budget.
“It has been released. I can assure you that for their constituency projects.