In accelerated approval, Senate extends 2023 budget by 3 months

Sharon EboesomiDecember 21, 20233 min

The senate extended implementation of the 2023 budget till March 31st 2024, to allow MDAs to utilise capital releases which would otherwise be returned to treasury

Opeyemi on 2023 budget
Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, Senate Leader

The Senate has granted an accelerated passsage to an amendment of the 2023 budget and the supplementray money bill passed last November.

The rationale is to extend the implementation of the 2023 budget till March 31, 2024 so that Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government some additional time to carry out the projects for which funds were just released.

To pass the amendment, the Senate had to suspend Rule 78 sub (1) of its standing orders to allow for the first and second reading of the bills to occur during Thursday’s plenary.

The bills, which was presented by Senate leader, Sen. Michael Opeyemi Bamidele (APC, Ekiti Central), were thereafter consolidated into one and titled “A Bill for an Act to Amend the 2023 Supplementary Appropriation Act in order to extend the implementation year from Dec. 31, to March 31, 2024” 

In his lead debate, Sen. Bamidele said the bill sought to extend the implementation of the 2023 Appropriation and Supplementary Acts from Dec 31, 2023, to March 31, 2024. He argued that the extension would allow projects implementation funded in the 2023 budgets to be implemented. 

He said the National Assembly’s recent passage of the 2023 appropriation and supplemental budget, as well as the recent capital releases to MDAs for 2023, are unlikely to be used before December 31, 2023 because of the delayed release of funds.

He stated that if projects implementation was not extended past December 31st, the funds would expire if they were not used.

In view of the critical importance of some key projects nearing completion, it is expedient to grant extension of the expiration clause to avoid compounding the problem of abandoned projects given that some of the projects were not provided for in the 2024 Budget. Hence the need to extend the implementation year from Dec.31, to March, 31 2024.

I therefore urge my colleagues to give their full support to the bill to allow full utilisation of the capital releases in order to help reflate the economy,” he cavassed.

 

STAR Check: Keep tabs on Sen. Bamidele’s track record in the 10th Senate here

Sharon Eboesomi

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