Undue pressure from populace forces legislators to jerk up budgets – Obono-Obla



A former presidential aide to former president, Muhammadu Buhari, Okoi Obono-Obla has said undue demands from the populace is one of the reasons lawmakers at federal and state level jerk up budgets.

 

Speaking in an interview in Calabar, he said most Nigerian electorate expect everything from legislators and in the frenzy to satisfy their greed and insatiability, the lawmakers play to the gallery and want to compete with the executive by veering into areas traditionally carved and reserved for the executive.

 

“We crave for legislators to give us money during festive periods such as Christmas, Ramadan, New Yam festivals, etc. We demand money for school fees, and hospital bills.

We want them to buy cars for us and do everything we should be doing for ourselves.

 

“We want to organize so-called empowerment schemes, etc, but do we ever take time to ruminate ,reflect, and ponder where these legislators gets money they use for all these welfare schemes they embarked upon on their senatorial districts and constituencies now and then.

 

“As long as we expect our legislators to continue to play the role of the local government and father Christmas, we should shed crocodile tears when they pad the budget estimates, submitted to them for approval by the executive branch, and we should not hypocritically cry blue murder, when they insert humongous amounts into the budget, which are not specifically tied to clearly defined projects,” he said.

 

Obono-Obla was referring to the latest scandal that rocked the National Assembly, adding that it has been a recurring decimal in the history of all Appropriation Acts since the inception of democratic civil rule in the country 25 years ago.

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