By Ayo Kehinde
The Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki has issued a warning to MDAs and Ministers that the Senate will not tolerate delays or absence of those invited to budget defence as the Upper House yesterday passed the Second Reading of the 2018 Appropriation Bill and forwarded it to the Committee on Appropriations and its various sub-committees for further consideration and budget defence by the various ministries, departments and agencies of the Federal Government.
Speaking on the passage of the Second Reading of the Budget, the President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki said: “We know that the timetable is very tight. We will be suspending plenary for us to be able to start the defence of this budget. Committee Chairmen and Members should please ensure that we keep to this timetable.
“Let me respond with a general note of warning to all Heads of MDAs to ensure that they strictly respect the letters of invitation and the timetable. This is not time for excuses for Ministers or Heads of parastatals to be traveling and not be able to attend their budget defence.
“We do not have the time. This is a very short timeframe, therefore, I expect all MDAs to be able to respect our invitation and be there on time so that the Committees can wrap up and be able to present their reports by the time we come back on Tuesday, the 19th of December,” he said.
The President of the Senate also announced that the Senate will be having a public hearing on the budget on December 11 and urged all Senators to attend.