The Ministry of Budget and National Planning is in the process of finalizing the 2018 Budget proposals preparatory to submission to the National Assembly in October 2017 as earlier indicated, Akpandem James ,Special Adviser to the Minister said in a statement Thursday.
He added that the impression that the 2018 Budget proposals will now be submitted to the National Assembly in January 2018 is not true as the Deputy Director in the Department of Economic Growth, Aso Vakporoye, who was reported as representing the Minister, denied the report.
The misrepresentation may have emanated from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) report which all the publications quoted; as the officer who was reported to have made the statement on behalf of the Minister insisted he neither introduced himself as representing the Minister nor said the 2018 Budget will be presented to the National Assembly in January 2018.
He claimed the gathering was just a meeting which the Department of Economic Growth was invited, as usual, by the National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) and OXFAM, to discuss issues relating to implementation of agriculture budgets.
James said all the Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government have gone through the required budget preparation procedures and the Ministry of Budget and National Planning concluded bilateral discussions on the budget with them about two weeks ago.
He added that the Budget Office which is in charge of preparation of national budgets is in the process of finalizing the budget harmonization and is awaiting legislative approval of the Medium Term Expenditure Framework/Fiscal Strategy Paper (MTEF/FSP) which has been endorsed by the Federal Executive Council in August 2017.
“It is therefore not true that the 2018 Budget proposal will now be presented to the National Assembly in January 2018,” James said.