Peter Obi Tackles National Assembly Over Alleged N3trn Budget Padding 

Peter Obi, Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, gestures during an interview with Reuters at his residence in Lagos, Nigeria August 18, 2022. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
Adoga Stephen By Adoga Stephen - Editor-In-Chief
2 Min Read

The Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, has urged the Presidency and the National Assembly to clarify the discrepancies in budget padding amounting to N3 trillion.

Obi expressed concern as this sum represents more than 10% of the national budget. Senator Abdul Ningi of Bauchi Central previously questioned the whereabouts of N3 trillion in the 2024 N28.7 trillion budget.

However, a statement from Bayo Onanuga, Special Adviser to the President on Information & Strategy, disputed Ningi’s claim.

The Presidency explained that the National Assembly increased the national budget by N1.2 trillion in the spirit of democracy.

In response, Obi criticized the lack of transparency in handling public funds, emphasizing that it is a breach of trust.

Posting on X, Obi wrote: “I find it deeply disconcerting, a matter of grave concern, and even shameful to read about the alleged N3 trillion discrepancy between the budget approved by the Nigerian Senate and the one being implemented by the presidency.

“One Senator claims there is a separate budget, allegedly containing the N3 trillion, that differs from what was passed by the National Assembly.

“This alleged discrepancy is especially worrying because it represents over 10% of our national budget (estimated at N29 trillion) and is more than the combined education (N1.54 trillion) and health (N1.38 trillion) official budgets.

“We also deserve full accountability of all our scarce resources placed in public trust. Therefore, we, the Nigerian people, demand a public explanation from both the National Assembly and the Presidency regarding the purpose and process of adding this alleged N3 trillion.”

He pointed out that transparency and accountability are essential foundations of democratic governance.

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By Adoga Stephen Editor-In-Chief
Stephen studied Mass Communication at the Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu (now Lagos State University of Science and Technology), where he acquired requisite training for the practice of journalism. He loves the media, and his interest mostly lies in print medium, where his creative writing skill makes him a perfect fit.