President Goodluck Jonathan finally signed the N4.987trillion budget into law on Tuesday night. Senior Special Adviser to the President on Media, Dr. Ruben Abati made the revelation in a press statement after a closed door meeting by the President and principal members of the National Assembly at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Abati called on ministers and head of government agencies to work hard so as to be able to meet up with the expectation of the President on the budget. The House of Representatives had slashed the recurrent expenditure by over N100billion and increased capital projects allocation to N100billion . The President originally set aside the sum of N2.41trillion for recurrent expenditure, but the lawmakers slashed it to N2.38trillion. The house also raised capital vote to N1.62trillion, up from Jonathan’s N1.54trillion.
The sum of N591.7billion was earmarked for debt servicing, while N387.9billion was allocated to statutory transfers. The crude oil benchmark also increased from the Executive proposal of $75 to $79 per barrel. It will be recalled that these adjustment did not go down well with the President who then decided not to append his signature on the bill. It is however not clear if these adjustments were retained in the budget signed by the President.