Utomi, Agbaje fault delay in harmonisation of oil price benchmark

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A Political Economist, Prof. Pat Utomi, on Tuesday said there was no justification for the delay in reaching a compromise on the crude oil price benchmark for the 2014 federal budget.

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Utomi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in a telephone interview in Lagos that the National Assembly should consider the implication of delaying a nation’s budget.

NAN reports that while the Senate has approved 76.50 dollars a barrel as the crude oil benchmark, the House of Representatives passed 79 dollar per barrel benchmark

Utomi said that the delay in reaching harmonised oil price for the 2014 federal budget was unnecessary.

According to him, what is unfathomable is why the chambers reached different benchmarks in a situation that required thoroughness.

Mr Fred Agbaje, a constitutional lawyer, said that there was no excuse for the failure of the National Assembly to get the oil benchmark right and ready before the President’s budget presentation.

“Time is of essence in budgetary matters. The lawmakers must sit down and ensure they finish with the harmonisation rather than pursuing other things,” Agbaje said.

NAN reports that President Goodluck Jonathan on Tuesday wrote to both chambers of the National Assembly indicating his decision to postpone the budget presentation earlier scheduled to take place same day.

In the letter, the President said “there is a need for both chambers to harmonise the crude oil price benchmark for the Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Financial Strategy Paper before the presentation’’.

Under the Fiscal Responsibility, the budget is predicated upon the MTEF and the FSP.

pat-utomi1

Pat Utomi, Fred Agbaje

Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsolahttps://naija247news.com
Babatunde Akinsola is aNaija247news' Southwest editor. He's based in Lagos and writes on the Yoruba Nation political issues, news and investigative reports

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