Buhari says NASS committees removed FG projects, replaced with theirs

President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed why he repeatedly refused to sign the 2016 budget despite pressure from the Nigerian Assembly (NASS).

President Muhammadu Buhari signs 2016 budget on May 6, 2016

According to Buhari, he declined assent because some NASS committees had replaced Federal Government projects with theirs.

He made the disclosure during an interview in Katsina which was monitored on radio and television by Daily Trust.

“We will do our best to fix the country. When the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, asked me to sign the budget weeks ago and there were issues, I told him I won’t,” Buhari said.

“But when he insisted, I told him if I assented to it and anything happened, he would be held responsible. He accepted and left. But when he had a second thought, he ran back to me and agreed with me that we shouldn’t sign it.  It was at that point I heard of padding. The committees of the National Assembly removed our projects and replaced it with theirs.

“That’s was why we had three weeks to look at it. When he returned to me again, Udoma told me that most of the projects they (National Assembly) included had been removed but that we can go with the remaining ones since I must approve money before funds would be released for the execution of projects,” he added.

Buhari signed the budget into law on Friday, May 6, 2016.

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