The Peoples Democratic Party, has faulted President Bola Tinubu’s N27.5 trillion budget proposal to the National Assembly for the fiscal year 2024.
The opposition party in a terse statement made by it’s spokesman Debo Ologunagba on Wednesday, described the budget proposal as deceptive, strangulating and hopeless.
Debo Ologunagba said if the budget is passed, it will plunge the country into severe economic hardship and despondency.
It charged the National Assembly in accordance with Sections 80, 81, and 82 of the 1999 Constitution to reject the 2024 budget as proposed.
“The PDP calls on the National Assembly pursuant to its Constitutional duty under Section 80, 81 and 82 of the 1999 Constitution to reject the 2024 budget as presented and use its legislative powers to disassemble the budget and make provisions that are critical and pivotal to the growth of the economy and the welfare of Nigerians,” the party said.
Ologunagba said the budget is devoid of concrete mechanisms to revive the economy, create jobs, address the comatose manufacturing and productive sectors, human capital development deficiencies, and depleting the life expectancy of Nigerian citizens.
He added that the 2024 budget is filled with heavily padded figures, duplicated items, and several false statistics, including claims of global increase in the inflation rate.
It further noted that the budget is predicated and expected to be funded from multilateral and bilateral foreign loans, increased taxes on Nigerians, mortgage the nation and strangulate the already impoverished Nigerians.
Part of the statement reads, “The budget framework with respect to Recurrent Expenditure Vote of N9.9 trillion, Capital Expenditure Vote of N8.7 trillion and N8.25 trillion for debt services is unsustainable and unrealiaable given the stated outstanding debt and proposed borrowing which is targeted mainly to finance consumption, luxury appetite and debt servicing.
“The lack of concrete and verifiable action plans to revive the manufacturing, energy, agricultural, and education sectors which are the main drivers of any economy is a pointer that the Tinubu-led APC government is bereft of ideas and completely disconnected from the reality of life being faced by Nigerians.
“By adopting a defeatist N750 per US Dollar exchange rate, President Tinubu has further plunged our economy into the abyss, weakened our productive sector, wrecked the purchasing power of Nigerians and the capacity of the youths to be creative, recognizing that it will be almost impossible for Small and Medium Enterprises as well as Startups to access capital under such a suffocating budget.
“Every responsible leadership strives to work and defend its national currency. Unfortunately, the Tinubu-led government has surrendered our nation’s currency and pride to the whims and caprices of the so-called market forces.
“The PDP insists that with a transparent, honest, and innovative management of resources and economic potentials of the nation; without inordinate pursuit of luxury consumption by a few individuals in leadership positions, as being witnessed under the APC, the economy will witness a rapid turn-around and the Naira strengthened to its value of below N200 per US Dollar bequeathed by the PDP to the APC in 2015
“This 2024 budget as presented by President Tinubu therefore represents hopelessness for Nigerians. It is pathetic that the President whose main duty is to provide for the security and welfare of Nigerians as provided for in Section 14 (2) (b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) could present a budget that is not geared towards the attainment of that Constitutional duty imposed on him.”