2024 Budget allegation damaged integrity of Senate totally, says Akpabio

The allegation that the 2024 Budget was padded with an additional N3.7 trillion has damaged the integrity of the Senate Chamber, Senate President, Godswill Akpabio has said.

He stated this during plenary on Tuesday while reacting to the allegations made against the House by the lawmaker representing Bauchi Central, Abdul Ahmed Ningi.

Senator Akpabio said Senator Ningi’s false allegations have done irreparable damage to the reputation of the Senate.

“Nigerians are bashing the Senate, many Nigerians would never in future come back to respect this chamber. So, the integrity of the Senate has been damaged,” Akpabio lamented.

Recall that the embattled Senator reportedly made claims in a BBC Hausa Service interview, alleging that a consultant he hired to look at the 2024 budget had stated that the budget approved was around N25 trillion and that the N3.7 trillion associated with the budget could not be traced.

The Senate President, however, used the opportunity to clarify the figures regarding the 2024 Appropriation Act.

He stated: “What the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu presented to us in a joint sitting at the end of November 2023 for consideration was N27.5 trillion. So, at no time did the President present N25 trillion.

“The Presidency has even come to clarify that and if there is any addition to the budget, it is in the sum of N1.2 trillion.

After a lengthy deliberation on the floor of the Nigerian Senate on Tuesday, the lawmakers suspended Senator Abdul Ahmed Ningi for three months.

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