By Lawrence Olaoye
Senate President, Senator Ahmed Lawan, has said that delay in the submission of the ministerial list by President Muhammadu Buhari for clearance will not prevent the lawmakers from according the Appropriation Bill expeditious passage.
Responding to question on whether the National Assembly could still return the nation’s fiscal cycle to January to December as promised considering the fact that the President has yet to present his cabinet nominees for screening, the Senate President said such was possible if the executive could present the Appropriation Bill by September this year.
He said “I think there is nothing to worry us deeply. The budget itself is normally prepared by civil servants, the permanent secretaries superintend and the directors will work most of the time.
I believe that we are still on course and I believe both the executive and the legislature are on the same page on this, we are desire and are prepared and determined to pass the budget by the first and second week December by the grace of God, provided it is presented to us end of September.”
Lawan also told newsmen that they discussed those things that would “ensure that the people of Nigeria are better protected, the economy of Nigeria performs better to the inclusion of everyone in the country, that governance generally is set to achieve the set targets of providing security and welfare for Nigerians.”
The Senate President added that the National Assembly would “collaborate and cooperate with the executive arm of government, work together to ensure we find better approaches, improved paradigm to ensure we improve the current situation is addressed appropriately.”
Asked whether they discussed their security summit proposal with the President, he said “No! we haven’t discussed that. But you know that at the end of the day we are going to have a security summit that will be a collaboration between the two arms of government. And this is essential because while we provide the legislative intervention that is required, the executive arm of government is the one that implements. So we have to work together and we will do that.”
He assured that the National Assembly was determined to have a friction-free relationship with the executive adding that nominees from the President would be confirmed without delay beginning with the confirmation of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Muhammed Tanko.