After months of delay, the Nigerian Senate passed the N6.06 trillion 2016 Appropriation bill on Wednesday with N1.587 trillion approved for capital expenditure and N2.646.3 trillion earmarked for recurrent expenditure.
The controversial budget had been riddled with fraud which caused the delay.
While N351.37 billion was approved as statutory transfers, N1.475.3 trillion is for debt service, and N2.2 trillion for fiscal deficit was also approved.
The Senate slashed spending by N17 billion and removed shortfall running into several billions of naira.
According to Senator Danjuma Goje, Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriation, the difference in N17 billion had to do with the fact that the initial budget had a lot of errors of omissions in the area of personnel cost, which was initially described as padding.
The budget was pegged on an oil benchmark of $38, crude production of 2.2000m barrels per day and the exchange rate of N197 to $1.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma commended the National Assembly for passing the 2016 budget immediately after plenary.
Senator Udoma was particularly pleased that the Legislature kept the budget within the amount proposed by the Executive, especially as the fiscal deficit was not increased.
“I wish to commend the National Assembly for passing the 2016 budget today. I am particularly pleased that they have kept the budget within the amount the Executive proposed and the fiscal deficit has not been increased,” the Minister said, according to a statement by Akpandem James, his Media Adviser.