Activist challenges Kogi Assembly on variation in 2017 budget
The Executive Director, Centre for Human Rights and Conflict Resolution, Lokoja, Idris Miliki Abdul, has drawn the attention of the Kogi State House of Assembly to a constitutional gap in the 2018 appropriation bill.
The budget document, which was presented to the House of Assembly on December 21, 2017 is being challenged by Abdul as not being in tandem with what was approved as 2017 appropriation.
According to him, the governor in his speech had indicated that the amount approved by the Kogi State House of Assembly as 2017 appropriation was N185,057,744,523 as against the N174, 851,544,523 contained in the final document that was published by the same government.
The human right activist indicated that the difference was an illegal import as there was no supplementary budget approved by the Committee on Finance and Appropriation of the Kogi State House of Assembly throughout 2017.
He therefore challenged the Kogi State House of Assembly to explain the variation as contained in the governor’s speech and the budget presentation to the Kogi State house of Assembly for approval.
He said the governor swore to uphold the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, saying that he can not continue to implement it in isolation.
According to him, budget documents are the most important document outside the 1999 Nigeria constitution.
“It is an annual event that federal, state and local governments present their proposed budgets to the respective legislature for approval.
“Unfortunately in Kogi State we do not have local council legislators in the past two years under the government of Alhaji Yahaya Bello, which will be 2 years on the 27thJanuary 2018.”
Efforts to speak with the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Matthew Kolawole on telephone was not successful as he did not pick his calls.