ABUJA, April 27 Nigeria's upper house of
parliament aims to pass the government's 2017 spending plan next
week, Senate leader Ahmed Lawan said on Thursday.
Lawan said parliament had wanted to pass the budget in March
and April but could not, adding that it was doing everything
possible to make up the lost time.
"By next week ... we should be able to finish our own work
and pass the budget to Mr. President to sign," he told reporters
after a meeting with the president.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who has faced rising
disenchantment over his handling of Nigeria's economy, presented
his record 7.298 trillion naira ($23.24 billion) budget to
lawmakers in December. It must be agreed by lawmakers before the
president can sign it into law.
Nigeria is in its second year of recession, brought on by
low oil prices, which have slashed government revenues, weakened
the naira and caused chronic dollar shortages.
Buhari has asked lawmakers to approve a borrowing plan of
$6.93 billion from China and the World Bank to upgrade its rail
network and help rebuild the insurgency-torn
This year's budget lays out plans to pull Africa's largest
economy out of recession with a focus on boosting infrastructure
Senator Danjuma Goje, who chairs the senate committee on the
spending plan, in March said the budget was likely to pass
($1 = 314.0000 naira)
(Reporting by Felix Onuah; Writing by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing
by Larry King and Pritha Sarkar)