Almost two weeks after President Muhammadu Buhari signed the 2021 budget into law, the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and Planning, Mrs (Dr) Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed will unveil the comprehensive picture of the government’s revenue projections for this year to the public on Tuesday.
The Nigerian Parliament had on December 21 approved the government’s 2021 budget of N13.6 trillion (about $36 billion), with the President simultaneously signing the Appropriation Bill and Finance Bill 2020 into law 10 days later.
It is a N3-trillion increase over the 2020 budget, and has received bashing from the likes of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) former Presidential Candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS).
The Minister’s Tuesday presentation will happen virtually, going by a memo from the Budget Office of the Federation, an arm of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
Unlike past events taking place in public with hundreds of participants gathering to witness the Finance Minister break down the budget into sectional allocations, with this development, this year’s version will be held virtually for the first time, in line with COVID-19 protocols.
Sighted by The Daily Times, the memo invited members of the public, NGOs, the diplomatic community, the organised private the sector, civil society organisations and the general public to participate in the virtual presentation of what has become an annual ritual.
While Atiku said the budget, first presented to the National Assembly in October, was no longer tenable because of the country’s recent slide into recession, NANS described the Buhari government’s allocation of 5.6 per cent to education as the worst in the last one decade.
This year’s budget has been predicated on the assumption that the country would witness a 3-per cent economic growth
It also revolves around crude oil prices benchmark of $40 a barrel, with production capacity standing at 1,860,000 barrels daily.
President Muhammadu Buhari had signed both the 2021 Appropriation Bill and Finance Bill 2020 into law on 31st December, following their passage by the National Assembly.
The National Assembly had taken the initiative to increase the aggregate revenue originally proffered by the government from N7.89 trillion to N7.99 trillion and the planned expenditure from N13.08 trillion to N13.59 trillion.