• Monday, June 17, 2024
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BusinessDay

Katsina lawmaker kicks as Reps raise FG’s CBN loan access to 15%

Wase lauds Buhari for signing federal medical centres bill 2022

Sada Soli, member representing
Jibia/Kaita federal constituency of Katsina State in the House of Representatives, has opposed the upward review of the Ways and Means loan accessible to the Federal Government from five to 15percent.

The House made the increase following the passage of a bill for an Act to Amend the Central Bank of Nigeria Act, 2007 at an emergency plenary session on Sunday.

This came barely 24 hours the Senate at an emergency sitting on Saturday, passed the CBN amendment bill increasing the loan access by 15percent.

With this passage by both chambers of the National Assembly, the amendment would be transmitted to President Muhammadu Buhari for assent before the expiration of his tenure tomorrow.

Under the CBN Act, the Ways and Means provision allows the government to borrow from the apex bank if it needs short-term or emergency finance to fund delayed government expected cash receipt of fiscal deficit.

According to the existing CBN Act, the Ways and Means must not exceed five percent of the previous year’s revenue.

The CBN Act Section 38(2) & (3) states, “that Ways and Means shall not exceed 5% of the previous year’s revenue of the Federal Government.”

At the consideration of report on the CBN Act, 2007 amendment bill, sponsored by Victor Nwokolo, the chairman of the House Committee on Banking and Finance, Soli (APC, Katsina) objected to it.

“Mr. Chairman, does it mean with this amendment that the CBN somehow advances to Government at 10 percent or is it a wake up call at the twilight of this government we are changing this from five percent to 15 percent?

“Can the Chairman, Banking and Currency kindly explain this not only to the National Assembly but to Nigerians. Does it mean the CBN granted this advances at 15 percent or what is going on? This is what we don’t know Chairman.

“I’m a member of the Committee on Banking and Currency. I didn’t know when this discussion took place. I can stand on privilege Order 6 to call for a on explanation as a member of this Committee, how we reached at this amendment, please?” he queried.

But in his response, Ahmed Wase the deputy Speaker who presided over the Committee of the Whole said the right thing was to pass the bill.

Wase said: “Hon. Sada the only explanation I may attempt to give if I listened to you very carefully is this, the Chair has the right to commit after second reading any bill to the Committee of the Whole.

“It is there contained in our Standing Order. It depends on the importance and the exigency of the moment. And in light of this I want to beg our colleagues to please consider this amendment and we pass it so that we have the right thing done.”

Also, the House passed a bill seeking to extend the implementation of the Capital Aspect 2022 Supplementary Appropriation Act from June 30 to December 31, 2023.

The bill which seeks to approve the sum of N819 billion for capital expenditure and for related matters was considered at the Committee of Supply, thereby raising the budget deficit for 2022 to N8.17 trillion and deficit GDP ratio to 4.43 percent.

President Buhari had in a letter to the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila late December last year, sought approval for supplementary 2022 Appropriation of N819 billion.

The letter read in part: “I have therefore approved the supplementary 2022 Appropriation of N819,000,536,937, all of which are capital expenditure.

“The supplementary would be financed through additional domestic borrowings and this would raise the budget deficit for 2022 to 8.17 trillion and deficit GDP ratio to 4.43 percent.”

Similarly, the House at the emergency plenary session, passed a bill seeking to repeal the Produce (Enforcement of Export Standards) Act, 2004.

The bill seeks to enact the Federal Produce Inspection Service (Enforcement of Export Standards) (Establishment) Bill, 2023 to provide for the Inspection and enforcement of Grades and Quality Standards of Produce and Commodities intended for Export from Nigeria at Ports of Shipment.

Meanwhile, the House deferred the consideration of a bill seeking to repeal the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission Act, 2004 and enact the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission bill.

The proposed legislation intends to
grant the Commission enforcement powers in the monitoring of accruals to and disbursement of revenue from the Federation Account and to bring the Act in conformity with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

On the other hand, Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the House read the defection letter of a member from Kwara State, Olododo Cook from the Social Democratic Party (SDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Therefore, the House adjourned plenary to Tuesday, May 30, 2023.