The House of Representatives is poised to ensure efficient implementation of the 2016 budget, the speaker, Mr Yakubu Dogara, said on Tuesday in Abuja.
Dogara stated this while welcoming his colleagues to plenary after the Easter recess.
He said that the House would soon commence sectoral debates of the budget as promised in the legislative agenda of the 8th Assembly.
He reminded the lawmakers of their resolve to put in place a comprehensive oversight programme as commencement of implementation of the budget was anticipated.
According to him, our resolve as enunciated in our Legislative Agenda requires of us that we speedily put in place a comprehensive programme to ensure the quality of oversight that speaks to the efficient and effective budget implementation.
Dogara said that the perennial poor budget implementation culture had inflicted incalculable damage to the country’s developmental aspirations.
“The reality that a beautifully crafted budget is meaningless in the face of poor implementation cannot be overstated,” he said.
“I should also like to put us on notice that pursuant to our Legislative Agenda, we shall soon be commencing our programme of Sectoral Debates.
“You will recall that we committed ourselves in our Legislative Agenda document to introduce sectoral debates on various aspects of Nigerian economy as part of our legislative initiative to address national problems.
“These sectoral debates will lead to the crafting of new laws or amendment to existing ones or generate recommendations on how to address the specific problem in question,” he said.
He said that the House would designate specific legislative sitting days or weeks in its calendar specifically for discussion on various problems facing the nation.
The speaker stated that identified themes, sectors, areas or problems would include employment and job creation, health, education and social services, women, youths and children concerns.
He said that heads of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) may be required to make presentations on issues relevant to their areas as part of the sectoral debates.
He also said that another issue of critical importance was the unwarranted delay in submitting reports of committee referrals.
“When we resumed from the Christmas recess early in the year, I did call our attention to the fact that the unprecedented 150 bills we introduced into the legislative mill had placed onerous duty on us to ensure action was concluded on same, along with other bills.
“I must state that by the envisaged projection, we are way behind schedule.
“I implore all relevant committee chairmen to quickly conclude their reports on the various referrals to their committees.
“Committees that persist in inability to meet their referral schedules shall be divested of their jurisdiction in respect of such referrals,” he said.