LIFE SERVICE: NASS to deliberate on kidnappings, budget padding among other issues

David OputahMarch 12, 20245 min

This week at the National Assembly, LIFE by OrderPaper presents a constellation of critical issues set to command the attention and deliberation of lawmakers as they convene to address pressing national concerns.

As the National Assembly gears up for another week of legislative proceedings, a myriad of critical national issues is expected to dominate the agenda, signalling a period of intense deliberations and policy formulation.

The following are anticipated to dominate the legislative agenda: The recent surge in insecurity exemplified by the alarming kidnappings of students and teachers in Kaduna and Borno states; the Ways and Means investigation by the Senate; allegations of budget padding by a high-ranking Senator; continuous epileptic power supply; and the student loan policy coming into effect this week.

Insecurity and kidnappings in Kaduna and Sokoto:

The recent abductions of students in Kaduna and Sokoto states have intensified concerns over the escalating insecurity plaguing various regions of the country. This disturbing trend underscores the urgent need for robust legislative measures to enhance security infrastructure, intelligence gathering, and inter-agency cooperation to combat insurgent activities and protect civilian lives.

The abduction incidents underscore the pervasive threat of insecurity across the nation, particularly in vulnerable regions. Lawmakers are poised to address the root causes of this menace, exploring legislative avenues to enhance security measures and protect the lives and properties of citizens.

Epileptic power supply:

The persistent challenges plaguing Nigeria’s power sector, characterized by erratic electricity supply and infrastructure deficiencies, continue to impede socio-economic progress and inhibit industrial productivity.

The National Assembly is poised to deliberate on legislative interventions aimed at revitalizing the power sector, promoting renewable energy initiatives, and addressing systemic bottlenecks to ensure reliable electricity provision nationwide.

Budget Padding allegations by Senator Ningi

The allegation of budget padding by Senator Abdul Ningi is surely a top issue this week.

OrderPaper recalls that Senator Ningi, who is the Chairman of the Northern Senators’ Forum, had during an interview with the BBC Hausa Service, on Saturday, alleged that the Federal Government was operating a budget different from the one passed by the National Assembly.

According to him, the National Assembly debated and passed N25 trillion as a 2024 budget and not the N28.7 trillion that is being implemented by the Federal Government.

The allegation casts a shadow on the transparency and integrity of the legislative process. As public scrutiny intensifies, the National Assembly is poised to initiate inquiries and investigations to ascertain the veracity of these allegations and uphold accountability standards within its ranks.

The Senate is sure to respond while Senator Ningi already says he’s not afraid of suspension!

Investigation of Ways and Means by the Senate:

The Senate’s investigation into the modalities and mechanisms employed to address national economic challenges is expected to remain a focal point of legislative scrutiny. Already, the Senate has set up a committee for the investigation.

Lawmakers will delve into fiscal policies, revenue generation strategies, and expenditure frameworks to assess their efficacy in stimulating economic growth, curbing inflationary pressures, and fostering sustainable development.

Implementation of student loan policy:

With the imminent commencement of the student loan policy, lawmakers are tasked with overseeing its implementation and monitoring its impact on higher education accessibility and affordability.

With the policy poised to take effect, lawmakers are tasked with overseeing its rollout and mitigating potential challenges to ensure equitable access to educational opportunities for Nigerian students.

The convergence of issues surrounding insecurity, budget transparency, power sector reform, and education policy underscores the multifaceted challenges facing the nation. As legislators convene to address these pressing concerns, the National Assembly is poised to play a pivotal role in shaping policies and initiatives aimed at fostering national development and safeguarding the welfare of all citizens.

Stay tuned for comprehensive coverage of the deliberations and outcomes emanating from the National Assembly as it navigates the complex terrain of governance and policymaking.

David Oputah

Oputah David M is a Bloomberg-trained Journalist with a diversified experience in online journalism and newsroom management. He is a 2023 MTN Media Innovation fellow!

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