It’s Our Duty To Pad Budget, Says Reps Member - Uju Ayalogu's Blog for News, Reviews, Articles and More

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Wednesday 10 August 2016

It’s Our Duty To Pad Budget, Says Reps Member

It’s Our Duty To Pad Budget, Says Reps Member

Abiodun Olasupo

A lawmaker representing Iseyin/Itesiwaju/Kajola/Iwajowa federal constituency, Abiodun Olasupo, has said that padding of budget is one of their constitutional responsibilities as members of the House of Representatives.

Olasupo, who is the Chairman House of Representative Committee on Legislative Compliance, made the revelation on Wednesday while on inspection of some of the intervention and federal government projects under his constituency.

Citing Sections 80 and 81 of the Nigeria constitution, Olasupo argued that it is within the powers of the Green Chamber to alter the budget, adding that it doesn't make sense to criminalise the act.

He argued that whenever the budget presented by the executive arm of government does not reflect true federal character, it is the duty of the House of Representatives to pad or alter it.

“If you look at the Nigeria Constitution, what Honourable AbdulMuminin Jibrin refer to as padding is tantamount to what the constitution defines as the function of a member of House of Representative because the constitution guarantees the three major function of making law, appropriation, and over sight.

“In appropriation it is either for us to add, subtract or change and what Hon Jibrin has been trying to say is that we are changing, inserting and adding, so if that is what he calls padding then that is what the constitution expects the house of representative to do.

“In my own opinion been an active member during the budget defence, I was involved in the budgeting system of up to six ministries, I participated in FERMA, NAVY, health institutions, governmental agencies and a whole lot of them.

The entire budgeting system make it possible that if you are elected as a member of national assembly and you are not ready to do what Muminin Jibrin calls padding then you are a failure, because basically the budget that is been brought to the national assembly does not reflect the principle of federal character as guaranteed by the constitution,” he said

“When the executive are bringing the budget they are not considering my constituency, so they will bring a budget to me and I am expected to approve it, and if it doesn’t have the interest of my constituency you want me to keep quite, no I won’t, what I will also do is to insert what will favour the people of my constituency which is what Jibrin calls padding.

“I am not saying somebody is wrong or right but I do not see what is bad in attracting projects to my constituency. For the first time in the history of this country a budget presented by the executive was reduced when a president personally presented the budget to the national assembly personally.

It means that we are shifting away from impunity, and corruption that has characterised the government of the past,” Olasupo added.

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