The Nigerian Senate has taken a decisive step to investigate all tax waivers granted by the Federal Government from 2015 till date. This investigation is coupled with a call for the cancellation of waivers that lack direct connections to non-governmental or non-profit organizations.
In a bid to ensure accountability and legality in financial operations, the Senate has further directed the deregistration of all irregular and illegal subsidiaries linked to the Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST).
Notably, the Senate emphasized the need for scrutiny regarding the N10 billion allocated by the Ministry of Finance for the proposed restructuring and recapitalization of NIPOST.
The lawmakers, expressing their commitment to upholding financial laws, recommended stringent penalties, including imprisonment, for individuals found violating these statutes.
These directives stem from recommendations put forward by the Senate Committee on Finance within the framework of the 2024-2026 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP).
Senator Sani Musa, the Chairman of the committee, presented the report for adoption, which the Senate approved. Alongside this, the Senate endorsed President Bola Tinubu’s proposed N26.1 trillion budget for 2024, encompassing various key parameters.
Among the approved parameters are new borrowings amounting to N7.8 trillion, setting the benchmark oil price at $73.96 for 2024, with a projected daily oil production volume of 1.78 million barrels.
Additionally, the Senate has approved a GDP growth rate of 3.76 per cent, an inflation rate of 21.40 per cent, recommended a benchmark exchange rate at N700 to $1, and projected a budget deficit of N9.04 trillion.
The report highlights specific allocations, including N16.9 trillion as retained revenue, a N9 trillion budget deficit (including Government-Owned Enterprises), N1.3 trillion for statutory transfers, approximately N8.2 trillion for debt service, N234.6 billion in the sinking fund, N1.27 trillion for pensions, gratuities, and retiree benefits.
It also delineates N10.2 trillion for total recurrent (non-debt) expenditure and N4.49 trillion for capital expenditure. These figures provide a comprehensive overview of the budgetary allocations and financial strategies outlined within the report.