Embattled lawmaker, Abdulmumin Jibrin, claims Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, took a huge risk by signing the 2017 Budget.
The suspended member of the House of Representatives, made the assertion in a statement issued on Monday, June 19, 2017.
Before assenting the appropriation bill, Osinbajo had questioned the extent of changes made to it by the federal lawmakers who assured him that the national assembly acted within the law.
Jibrin however, described Osinbajo’s action as the “most generous concession in budget negotiation by a president since 1999”.
He also recalled how President Muhammadu Buhari had refused to sign the document in 2016 until all “grey areas” were duly corrected by the house.
Jibrin said: “He (Osinbajo) further stated that he agreed to sign the budget after the assurance of commitment from NASS to restore the lifted funds. That demonstration of faith in NASS was unprecedented, and the most generous concession in budget negotiation by a President since 1999.
“No President has ever agreed to sign the budget into law on the basis of extracting a commitment from NASS. In this case of Ag President Osinbajo, perhaps beyond the respect he enjoins, he must strive to also be feared, through resistance to compromising settlements in his relationship with NASS.
“The reason isn’t far-fetched; all attempts to flatter and hoodwink President Buhari into signing the 2016 budget, by assuring to make corrections later, met an impenetrable brick wall. He saw through the smokescreen, and thus even refused to be blackmailed by threats of possible backlash from NASS if the budget is not signed before corrections are made and also the need to save time.
“No President was ready to take the risk with NASS but Osinbajo did, as it appeared like striking a deal with an untrustworthy partner. Whether this seeming pact is calculated or not, is left for time and the scrutiny of vigilant and critical Nigerians to determine. What is obvious, however, is the Ag President has played into the hands of NASS.
“What the Ag President has given to NASS is a victory it has never had in the budget process since 1999, understandably to strengthen the relationship between the two frequently hostile arms of government. And so, he deserves a reciprocal gesture and unmistakable friendship from the lawmakers, not attacks and threats.”
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