OrderPaperToday – The presidency has said the 2016 budget passed last week by the National Assembly will not be assented to in a hurry by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Reason is that officials of the Executive arm of government will peruse details of the bill passed before the president can assent, so says Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Garba Shehu.

Speaking in an interview with Daily Trust newspaper, Mr. Shehu said the budget bill was transmitted to the president without details unlike the case when the Buhari presented the budget to the legislature with full details.

According to him, once the details are received by the president, they would be perused before he signs or otherwise, suggesting the possibility of a veto in the case that he finds them unsatisfactory.

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“The National Assembly has passed the budget and sent the bill to the President but the details did not come with the bill,” the presidential aide said, adding: “Of course, the President cannot sign something without seeing the details. The normal practice is that the details would have accompanied the bill. When the President presented the Appropriation bill it was accompanied by the details.”

According to him, “the Executive would look at it (details of budget). I am not saying that we are not in a hurry ourselves; everybody wants to see things start moving. We are waiting for the details and we will look at it in the hope that there are no major differences that would warrant the President going back to the parliament to ask for changes to be made.

“Going by the Constitution, the President can even withhold assent; he can veto but we are not expecting that. But as I earlier said, you cannot talk about what you have not seen so let the budget come in details and the president will look at it and decide whether to put his signature on it or withhold it if it calls for clarifications.”



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