As part of efforts to revamp the country’s economy, National Assembly has listed 11 economic reform bills which would be passed alongside 2017 Budget.
The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who made the disclosure at presentation of the 2017 Budget by President Muhammadu Buhari before Joint Session of the National Assembly on Wednesday, said core elements of the bills would aid executive in mobilising required private capital for development of the economy.
Saraki, called for mainstreaming of the private sector business and investment in order to boost development and get the country out of recession.
“To achieve, this we must make it much easier and efficient for people to invest in new business in our country. We are aware that we must attract private investment to play a central role in our recovery.
“We must make deliberate effort to market in Nigeria as an attractive brand through a very robust and highly coordinated process of engagements.
“We must start to inject confidence in the market through clarity and consistent policies and speak the same language to ensure that we are open and ready for business,” he said.
He called for synergy between the executive and legislature, particularly at a time when Nigerians looked to the Federal Government for solution to problems.
“Accept the fact that stakeholders would not work magic, all hands must be on deck to assure Nigerians that government is mindful of their plight.
“They don’t want to know what political parties we belong, or the language we speak or the God we worship. They have entrusted their fate in our hands and they need us now more than ever.
“Nigerians will pardon us if we do something wrong, but they will not forgive us if we do nothing at all. That is why the two chambers have taken a position, that though there might be differences, our opinions on issues of the economy should be based on one common purpose for this reason,” he stressed.
Speaking on the 2017 budget, the Senate President said there were indications that progress had been made compared to 2016 budget, adding that apart from the presentation of the proposal came much earlier than last year, progress had been made, particularly by the legislature to avoid controversies that surrounded 2016 budget.
“Already, this year’s budget process is benefiting from greater cooperation and consultations between the National Assembly and the Executives.
“NASS recognises that the problem with our budget and budget processes goes far deeper than the relative progress we have made.
“In August this year, we inaugurated a joint Executive and Legislative Committee and a Technical committee to review our budget system and identify ways we can make them more transparent, more participatory,” Saraki noted.
He stated that the committees had submitted their reports adding the National Assembly was in the process of implementing the recommendations which include, pre-budget consultation and engagement, greater information sharing and recording, public hearing and drafting of an organic public law and amendment of the Public Procurement Act.”
He assured that the National Assembly would continue to seek opportunities to deepen relationship between the legislature and the executive.
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