…Seeks to amend budget in letter to National Assembly
27 October 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja – President Muhammadu Buhari has proposed new adjustments to some line items in the 2016 budget to address financial urgencies in light of attacks to oil and gas installations in the Niger Delta, which have affected revenue generation.
The president’s proposal was contained in a letter to the National Assembly, in which he seeks a total N180.8 billion in virement for line items in both capital and recurrent expenditures.
Buhari said the need for government to augment funds in the federal coffers was caused by renewed militant activities in the Niger-Delta.
He said the destruction of oil installations had left his administration unable to pay overhead costs as the nation has no viable alternative means of revenue.
“The most viable option now is the virement of appropriated funds from heads or sub heads,” President Buhari said in the letter addressed to Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki and House of Representatives Speaker, Mr. Yakubu Dogara.
Areas where the president said needed urgent injection of funds include security, intervention programs, education and services.
According to the president, there was no point allowing funds to lay idle in some agencies while activities are grounded in others due to financial shortfalls.
For instance, he noted, the Public Complaints Commission was shut down last week following months of financial crisis. The agency is part of those the president plans to inject funds.
The Buhari administration had been grappling with low internal revenues for several months amid an economic recession.
The situation has been blamed on the situation in the Niger-Delta, where attacks on oil installations led to oil multinationals – including Shell and Agip – suspending some activities for a large part of the year.