President Muhammadu Buhari is presenting the 2016 national budget before a joint session of the National Assembly, comprising the Senate and the House of Representatives today, December 22.
The National Assembly complex has been locked down by presidential guards ahead of the presentation.
There are strong indications that lawmakers are ready to ensure that the 2016 Appropriation Bill gets speedy consideration and is passed into law.
Once the budget is presented today by the president, the Senate and the House of Representatives will go to their various chambers to commence work.
The arrangement is to present the bill for first reading today and tomorrow, the lawmakers will formally adjourn sitting till next year, when the bill would be presented for second reading and passed.
Thereafter, it will be referred to the appropriate committees on Finance, Budget, National Planning and Appropriation among others, which would make the job easy.
At this point, ministers, heads of parastatals, departments and agencies of government would be invited to defend their budget.
The budget presentation by Buhari is coming on the heels of the approval of Medium Term Framework Expenditure (MTEF) by the National Assembly. The Senate approved the MTEF last Wednesday.
The Federal Executive Council yesterday approved the final draft of the 2016 budget with an unprecedented capital vote of N2 trillion.
The 6.07 trillion Naira budget proposal for 2016 was predicated on $38 per barrel oil benchmark; 197 Naira exchange rate.
It is an increase of about 40 per cent from the previous budget of 4.357 trillion Naira which was presented to the National Assembly in 2014 by former president, Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.