NASS renovation may hamper Buhari’s presentation of 2023 budget

President Muhammadu Buhari’s physical presentation of the 2023 Appropriation to the joint session of lawmakers may be hampered by the ongoing renovation of the National Assembly complex.

After parliamentarians returned from their two-month recess, President Buhari was expected to present the annual budget.

Senator Ahmad Lawan, President of the Senate, confirmed this to journalists on Friday following an inspection of 022 being used as a “makeshift” venue for plenaries.

While fielding questions from journalists, Lawan stated that while the National Assembly expects Mr. President to present the 2023 budget estimates in the first week of October, the ongoing renovation is an issue.
“The Green Chamber of the House of Representatives normally used for such a very important event is also being renovated, calling for urgent action from the leadership of both Chambers on resumption on how to address the challenge”, he said.

He disclosed that one of the urgent legislative assignments that would be carried out by the Senate on resumption next week, is confirmation of Justice Olukayode Ariwoola as substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN).

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“Confirmation of Justice Ariwoola’s appointment by Senate on resumption next week is very necessary to beat the three months period of acting in that capacity.

“The Senate would have confirmed his appointment before proceeding on recess in July, but request to that effect got it from Mr President a day preceding the long recess”, Lawan noted.

He said further that issues of national security which have improved and consideration of the 2023 – 2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP), will also be accorded legislative priority on resumption.

On the temporary chamber to be used, the Senate President said arrangements put on ground are, to a large extent, manageable since it will only be used for some months.

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