Speaking to journalists after joining President Buhari to perform the weekly Friday’s Juma’at prayer at the Aso Rock mosque, Lawan said the National Assembly is thirsty and in a hurry to support the federal government in achieving its promises to Nigerians.
“We are in a hurry, we are thirsty to perform and to support Mr President”, Lawan said. “We want to see Mr President achieve those legacies dreams that he has and we are going to work full course and full time to ensure that we give him the maximum support that he requires.’’
Timely budget passage
The Senate President said the legislature would ensure that budgets are passed within three months.
He, urged the executive arm would always ensure early submission of the budget enable the National Assembly deliberate and pass it in good time.
“Well, this is a crucial thing that worries everyone, every Nigerian wants to see the national assembly pass the budget in good time and what we have in mind we’ve campaigned with that and it’s something both of us in the national assembly have bought into – that we’ll pass the budget within three months by the grace of God,” he said.
“But I want to say here that it takes two sides of government to pass the budget in good time. I am sure that the executive side of the government would like to present the budget before the national assembly in good time – in September or early October.
“By the grace of God, we in the national assembly will ensure that we carry out the budget defence and do the remaining parts of the processes and before we leave for Christmas break, the budget would have been passed and Mr President would have the budget before him to assent.”
The senate president, therefore, called for sacrifice by both the assembly and the executive so as to create a window for budget defence only — a dedicated period and time-frame- say a month of which only budget defence will be carried out in the National Assembly.
“It is our desire in the National Assembly that every minister, every chief executive officer of every agency comes to the national assembly and defence the budget of his agency or her agency before going out of the country.
“That window is going to be available within the one month but that is the only window that is going to be available.
“After that for example, every minister or head of agency who did not come to defend the budget of that institution, we will go ahead to work on such a budget appropriately,” he added.
President Buhari had scored the leadership of the eight National Assembly low on patriotism for “delaying the 2019 budget for seven months.