The Senate has said that a genuine and deliberate collaboration between the legislature and the executive arms of government could produce a robust fiscal policy that would effectively address the economic challenges currently confronting Nigeria.
According to the Senate, such collaboration would not only guarantee economic growth but also massive revenue generation.
The chairman, Senate Committee on Finance, Senator Sani Musa, stated this yesterday amidst preparations by a joint committee of the Senate chaired by him to engage heads of federal ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) in rigorous interactive public hearings this week on the 2024-2026 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper (MTEF-FSP).
The interactive sessions, to be coordinated by the Senate Committees on Finance, also includes Committees on Appropriations, National Planning and Economic Affairs, and Local and Foreign Debts.
The joint panel would scrutinise the fiscal document with the heads of MDAs and chief executives of government-owned organisations with a view to increasing the national revenue base and blocking leakages.
The federal government in the 2024-2027 MTEF/FSP pegged the price of crude oil at $73.96; exchange rate at N700/$; oil production at 1.78 million barrels per day; debt service of N8. 25 trillion; inflation at 21 per cent and GDP growth at 3.76 per cent.
The aggregate expenditure was estimated at N26.01 trillion for the 2024 budget, which includes statutory transfers of N1.3trn, non-debt recurrent expenditure of N10.26 trillion, debt service estimated at N8.25 trillion, as well as N7.78 trillion for personnel and pension cost.
The approved MTEF/FSP would set out the parameters upon which the next year’s budget would be predicated.
The chairman of the joint MTEF-FSP panel has therefore sought the cooperation of the executive arm of government in his committee’s determination to ensure drastic increment in the nation’s revenues to meet the challenges confronting the nation.
He said, “In this endeavour, I call for unity and cooperation between the legislative and executive branches.
“It is only through collaboration and consensus-building that we can develop fiscal policies that are robust, equitable, and conducive to sustainable economic growth.
“The challenges ahead are formidable, but our resolve is stronger.”
“The MTEF/FSP 2024 — 2026 is not merely a collection of numbers and projections but a comprehensive strategy designed to steer our nation through the complex economic landscape that lies ahead.”
According to him, the role as legislators in shaping the MTEF/FSP is not only a constitutional obligation but a moral imperative to their constituents who look to them for guidance and leadership in safeguarding their economic interests.