President Buhari Rejects $1bn Ajaokuta completion fund bill, seven others
President Muhammadu Buhari has declined assent to the Ajaokuta Steel Company fund Bill transmitted to him by the National Assembly in February.
The Bill stipulated the Federal Government should set aside $1 billion from the Excess Crude Account for the immediate completion of the moribund Ajaokuta Steel Company.
President Buhari also withheld assent to seven other Bills passed by the National Assembly and transmitted to him for assent.
Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday read separate letters, which informed the upper chamber about the decision of President Buhari to withhold assent to the Bills.
Buhari cited several reasons including infractions on extant laws, duplication of responsibilities of existing agencies, to financial constraints for his decision to decline assent to the Bills.
In a letter dated 19th March, 2019, he explained he declined assent to the Ajaokuta Completion Fund Bill because “appropriating $1billion from the Excess Crude Account” as decided by the National Assembly, “is not the best strategic option for Nigeria at this time of budgetary constraints.”
Buhari said: “The nation cannot afford to commit such an amount in the midst of competing priorities with long term social and economic impact that the funds can be alternatively deployed towards.
“Bills, which seek to make appropriation of revenues to fund public expenditure should be consolidated in the annual Appropriation Act such that these proposals pass through the traditional scrutiny that budget proposals are subjected to by the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Budget and National Planning and the National Assembly.
Furthermore, as the Excess Crude Account Funds belong to the Federation, it would be proper to consult with the National Economic Council where the States are represented.
“Relevant stakeholders such as the Ministries of Mines and Steel Development, Industry, Trade and Investment were not fully consulted.
“The inputs of key stakeholders are necessary to create the optimal legal and regulatory framework as well as institutional mechanism to adequately regulate the steel sector.”
In another letter dated 27th March, 2019 Buhari cited provisions of Section 32 of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency Bill 2018 as reasons for his refusal to assent to the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency Bill.
He said: “Section 32 of the Bill, introduces (I) a 2.5% levy on the profit before tax of the target companies which will increase the tax burdens of the companies while offering no direct benefit to them : (ii) a1% levy on imports which will also add to the cost of doing business in the country , (iii), a 5% levy on luxury goods which duplicates efforts by the Federal Ministry of Finance to raise excise on such goods in a more sustainable manner to the benefit of the Federal Government treasury “, he said .
He noted that if signed into law, the Agency will have similar objectives to the Bank of Industry particularly with regard to the funding of Small and Medium Enterprises.
He said: “Accordingly, it is important to streamline its functions to avoid a duplication or overlap of functions with other government institutions performing similar functions aside the likelihood of increasing public re-current expenditure by the proposed creation of new public sector bodies. ”
Other affected Bills include the Nigerian Aeronautical Search and Rescue Bill 2018, Chartered Institute of Training and Development of Nigeria (Establishment) Bill 2018 and Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria Bill 2018.
The National Housing Fund Bill 2018, National Institute of Credit Administration Bill 2018 and National Bio- Technology Development Agency Bill 2018, were also affected.
On each Bill, President Buhari gave reasons for his decision to withhold assent
Yauri Emirate Stakeholders Meet Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company, Seeks Improve Power supply
In an effort to increase energy supply and mutual relationship between Yauri Emirate, its environs and Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO), stakeholders from the Council have paid a courtesy call on the Management of the Company.
The Dallatun Yauri and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar who led the team on the visit on Wednesday, stated that the meeting is an offshoot of a letter written by the Emir of Yauri, His Royal Highness, Dr. Zaiyyanu Abdullahi to the Managing Director of KEDCO on the need to improve the electricity supply to Yauri Municipal and its environs as well as foster better understanding between the Company and the Community.
According to him “the delegation from the Emirate Council is here to present a passionate letter from His Royal Highness to the Management of KEDCO and to further discuss the challenges facing the community with a view to finding lasting solution to the epileptic power supply to the Emirate and its environs”
The Permanent Secretary who enumerated some of the consequences of irregular power supply which includes: job losses, potential collapse of small and medium businesses as well as increase in criminal activities, appealed to the company to improve on its public sensitization as well as introduce appropriate revenue accounting techniques by identifying and closing all leakages.
He further urged the Management of the Company to make adequate provision of meters for the Community and also ensure Company and Community relations through the creation of working groups to liaise with its local staff for prompt performance reports.
The Dallatun Yauri who thanked the Management for the warm reception accorded them, assured that the Emirate on its part will not only sensitize its people on the need for regular payment of their bills but also ensure continuous effective collaborative relationship.
He explained that the effort will also provide permanent solutions to the challenges identified.
Responding, the Managing Director, KEDCO, called on the Emirate to encourage their citizens on prompt payment of bills to enable the Company generate more energy for distribution.
While calling on the Council to discourage its subjects from indulging in illegal connection and distribution of electricity, hethanked the His Royal Highness for his outstanding leadership quality and assured that the Company will continue to partner with them, not only improved cordial relationship but also for effective power supply.
Members of the delegation include: Alh. Abubakar Sadiq Yelwa (Katukan Yauri), Managing Director, HYPPADEC; Hon. Dr. Yusuf Tanko Sununu – Member, House of Representatives, and Alh. Rilwan Hussein Abarshi, Chief Executive Officer/ Principal Consultant, RHA Consulting.
Featured4 years ago
Lampard Names New Chelsea Manager
Featured3 years ago
FG To Extends Lockdown In FCT, Lagos Ogun states For 7days
Featured4 years ago
NYSC Dismisses Report Of DG’s Plan To Islamize Benue Orientation Camp
Featured3 years ago
Children Custody: Court Adjourns Mike Ezuruonye, Wife’s Case To April 7
Featured2 years ago
Transfer Saga: How Mikel Obi Refused to compensate me After I Linked Him Worth $4m Deal In Kuwait SC – Okafor
Sports5 months ago
TINUBU LAMBAST DELE MOMODU
Featured4 years ago
Board urges FG to establish one-stop rehabilitation centres in 6 geopolitical zones
Sports9 months ago
BREAKING: Pinnick Attacks Buhari, Sports Minister Over 3rd Term Ambition