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Budget Padding: Obi Tackles Presidency, NASS, Demands Explanation

Peter Obi, Presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), has called on the National Assembly as well as the Presidency to explain the disparities in the N3 trillion budget padding.

Obi, a former governor of Anambra State who made the call said that the amount involved in the accounts for more than 10% of the federal budget, which makes it concerning.

Recall that Senator Abdul Ningi of Bauchi Central had questioned where N3 trillion in the N28.7 trillion budget for 2024 was going.

Ningi’s assertion was refuted, nevertheless, in a statement issued by Bayo Onanuga, Special Advisor to the President on Information & Strategy.

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According to the presidency, for the sake of democracy, the Nigerian government let the National Assembly increase the country’s budget by N1.2 trillion.

In response, Obi criticised the lack of openness in the administration of public finances, emphasising that it is a betrayal of confidence.

Posting on X, Obi wrote: “I find it deeply disconcerting and a matter of grave concern and even shameful to read about the alleged N3 trillion discrepancy between the budget approved by the Nigerian Senate and the one being implemented by the presidency.

“One Senator claims there is a separate budget, allegedly containing the N3 trillion, that differs from what was passed by the National Assembly.

“This alleged discrepancy is especially worrying because it represents over 10% of our national budget (estimated at N29 trillion) and is more than the combined education (N1.54 trillion) and health (N1.38 trillion) official budgets.

“We also deserve full accountability of all our scarce resources placed in public trust. Therefore, we, the Nigerian people, demand a public explanation from both the National Assembly and the Presidency regarding the purpose and process of adding this alleged N3 trillion.”

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