Lawan: Economy Will Pick up in 2020

Ahmad Lawan

By Deji Elumoye in Abuja

Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan, has given an assurance that the nation’s economy will pick up from 2020 fiscal year.

Lawan, who spoke on Friday shortly before the Senate adjourned plenary to January 20, stressed that the passage of the 2020 Budget by the National Assembly and its prompt assent by President Muhammadu Buhari, will have significant impact on the country’s economy with effect from next January.

According to him, the inflow of disbursed funds as a result of Nigeria’s return to the January – December budget cycle will see to the injection of resources by government effective next month.

His words: “One thing stands out clear; this Ninth Senate is prepared to change Nigeria for the better. For passing the 2020 budget before the end of December, for the President to sign the budget before the end of December, and for the budget to start taking effect from 1st January, definitely the Nigerian economy will see significant changes, because the inflow of the disbursement of funds by government will be an injection of some resources into the economy.

“This is something that was not available previously. We believe that the executive has a role to ensure that the 2020 budget is implemented fully as much as our resources can accommodate,” he said.

Commenting on the FCT budget passed Friday by the National AsAssembly, Lawan disclosed that, “As the State Assembly of the FCT, we have discharged our responsibility. The next thing is for FCT to ensure that it implements the budget.

“I will on behalf of all of us, urge the Committee on FCT to be steadfast and ensure that what we have passed here is what is implemented. We will work together with the executive arm to ensure we get those revenues that are supposed to fund the budget that we have passed.I believe that in this regard, we will not allow the FCT Administration not to do what is acceptable. We must ensure that this FCT is reclaimed, because there are so many things that are not going right.”

He particularly mentioned the need for the FCT to be secured against marauders, armed robbery and kidnapping incidents.

His words: “We need to ensure that the FCT is safe, that residents and visitors alike come in here and do their businesses safely in a very secured environment.

“This is supposed to be the most secured city in Nigeria, because this is the seat of government. If we are not able to provide that security that befits the status of the FCT, the story outside of Nigeria will not be good for the country. I believe that we have done our job, and what is left is for FCT to take up its responsibility to ensure that this budget is implemented,” Lawan added.

The passage of the FCT budget by the Senate was sequel to the consideration of a harmonized report of the Senate and House of Representatives Committees on Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Statutory Appropriation bill, 2020. Chairman of Senate Committee on FCT, Abubakar Kyari, in his presentation, gave a breakdown of expenditure to include: N55,878,241,095 as Personnel costs; N62,343,723,435 as Overhead costs; bringing Recurrent expenditure to a total of N118,221,964,530.

According to Kyari, the sum budgeted for Capital Expenditure in the 2020 fiscal year for the Federal Capital Territory is N160, 133,401,417.