By Adedapo Adesanya

The federal government may return to the National Assembly to appropriate extra revenue for the 2024 budget if the country records a solid revenue performance next year, according to the country's Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Mr. Wale Edun.

The Minister made this known on Monday, when he appeared before the Senate Finance Committee to defend his ministry's budget.

Speaking at the Red Chamber, Edun stated that the government led by President Bola Tinubu would rely on savings to increase the availability of funds to finance the 2024 budget, while also indicating that the federal government could consider a budget increase.

During his appearance on Monday, the Senate urged the Finance Minister to eliminate bottlenecks in delays in implementing the budget when approved.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee, Sani Musa, also expressed concern over the government’s inability to accelerate the implementation of the 2023 supplementary budget.

It would be recalled that President Tinubu, late last month, presented his first budget estimates of N27.5 billion for the year 2024 to the National Assembly.

Giving a breakdown of the budget estimates, the President pegged recurrent non-debt expenditure at N9.92 billion, capital expenditure at N8.73 billion, debt service at N8.25 billion, revenue at N18.32 billion, new loans at N7. 83 trillion and deficit of N9.18 trillion.

According to the President, the economy is expected to grow 3.76 percent, while inflation is expected to moderate to 21.4 percent in 2024.

Tinubu told lawmakers that the bill presented to them would “go further than ever in consolidating macroeconomic stability, reducing the deficit, increasing capital expenditure and allocation to reflect the eight priority areas of this administration.” .

“The budget we are now presenting constitutes the foundation on which we will build the future of this great nation,” he said.

However, last week, the Director-General of the Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze, said the 2024 budget, which is Nigeria's biggest ever, is not enough to meet the country's needs. He, however, warned that the government has to cut the coat according to the fabric.

“I am always the first to recognize that the budget of the Federal Government of Nigeria is too small in relation to our needs and requirements, but now it is a case of cutting coats according to our fabric and not our size,” said Akabueze . said on a program on Channels Television.

Source