In a bid to enhance the passage of the 2024 appropriation bill before the end of December, joint committees of the Senate and House of Representatives will sit during budget defence by ministries, agencies and parastatals.
Chairman of Senate committee on Appropriation, Senator Adeola Olamilekan (APC, Ogun West) made this known at the end of a meeting with sub committee chairmen of senate on Saturday in Abuja.
According to him “It will be a joint sitting between the House and the Senate. Some committees will be operating from the Senate while some will operate from the House so that we can still meet the deadline.
“But this time around, what has change is that we will be having joint sitting of Senate and House of Representatives” he emphasised.
He said the meeting discussed the modalities to be use to ensure smooth appropriation process in the Senate. “All the committee chairmen of the Senate are here and we have discussed extensively so that we can meet the 31st December deadline, so that the president can assent the budget, so we have perfected and we are ready to go”.
Speaking on time limit before the legislature, the lawmaker noted “there are no fire brigade approach, there are processes we have to follow. Agencies will have to appear and defend their budgets, they will return their findings to appropriation for us collate at the committee level”.
Commenting on problem of non- appearance of agencies over the years, Senator Olamilekan expressed optimism that part of the directive given by the President is that all ministers should ensure they are on ground to defend their budget before the National Assembly.
“I know no agency of government or parastatal will flout that order of the president and we are working towards that and from next week you will see agencies coming to defend their budget in the National Assembly”