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The Nigeria National Assembly Joint Committee on Electoral Matters on Monday ‘adopted’ the N143 billion Independent National Electoral Commission budget as presented by President Muhammadu Buhari.
There have been controversies around the budget as the INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, in his presentation to the committee on the August 15, demanded N189.2 billion.
In his letter of virement Buhari sent to the national assembly, N189.2 billion was requested to be released to INEC – N143.5 billion be released this year and N45.6 billion be released in 2019.
However, after over a week of deliberation on the matter, the chairman Committee on Electoral Matters, Senator Suleiman Nazif said that N143 billion will be approved for INEC after an executive session.
The committee, however, did not say when or if the other N45 billion will be approved for INEC.
“The joint committee sat and has come up with the resolution to adopt the N143 billion presented by Mr President,” Nazif said.
“It is also the wish of this committee that INEC then presents their budget of N143 billion as requested by Mr President.”
Nazif stated further that INEC has an opportunity to reprioritize and re-present the N143bn as requested by President when it appears before the Committee Tuesday.
“Therefore, INEC has an opportunity to prioritise and this committee is ready to receive them tomorrow. This committee will be reconvening tomorrow by 1 pm so that we can consider the presentation by INEC,” he said.