Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has faulted the supplementary budget which was recently signed by President Bola Tinubu.
PUNCH METRO reported that Tinubu on Wednesday signed the 2023 supplementary appropriation bill of N2.17 trillion into law.
The president signed the Supplementary Appropriation Act, 2023 in his office at the State House in the presence of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, George Akume; Senate President Godswill Akpabio; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tajudeen Abbas; the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Abubakar Bagudu; and Chairman Federal Inland Revenue Service, Zacheaus Adedeji.
While reacting to the development, Obi, in a series of post through his official X account faulted the supplementary budget.
According to him, the supplementary budget didn’t reflect most national and pressing needs of Nigerians.
“A supplementary budget is a budget made for very important national welfare needs of the people which were not captured originally in the main budget, or do not have adequate funding.
“Sadly, the most pressing national needs and emergencies have not featured in the supplementary budget that was just announced by the government. For example, the United Nations and World Food Programme have recently alerted that up to 6.5 million Nigerians will go hungry next year.
“This number is largely from among citizens in Sokoto, Adamawa, Borno, Yobe, and Zamfara States. A caring Government in order to plan for the mitigation of such pending catastrophe can request for supplementary budget provisions to cushion those under threat.
“No item of urgent social welfare has yet featured in the supplementary budget being orchestrated by this government. Instead, the items being made to dominate public discourse on the budget include a mysterious Presidential Yacht, Presidential Jets, the furnishing of already lavishly furnished presidential quarters and offices, fleets of luxury SUVs etc.
” This portrays a Government that is totally uncaring and insensitive to the suffering of the majority, and indifferent to the mood of the nation.
“The government’s overall attitude does not indicate that it is aware that the country is in a huge crisis, nor is the government in tune with the plight of the generality of our people. Even worse is the fact that most of the funding for these profligate expenditures will be largely borrowed.
“The least that Nigerians expect from the government at this difficult moment is empathy and realism, not lavish indulgence”, he stated.