A house of representatives panel has warned government ministries, departments and agencies (MDAS) against tampering with the revised 2020 budget

In a statement, the house committee on appropriations said there are reports that MDAs are making adjustments in their various budgets following the review by the federal government.

Although President Muhammadu Buhari had presented N10.59 trillion budget for 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic forced the downward review of the budget to suit “emerging realities”.

The house appropriations committee through Betara Aliyu, its chairman, said MDAs making adjustments in their budget without the authorisation of the national assembly would be dealt with.

Aliyu said: “There were reports that following the downward review of the budget from N10.59 trillion to N10.52 trillion due to the COVID-19 crisis and the dwindling oil prices, some MDAs were already adjusting the budget proposal to suit their needs.

“Such acts will not be condoned by the National Assembly as any MDA or official found to be engaged in such illegal practices will be made to face the music.

“I want to warn that no other arm or department of government has any power over budget except the legislature, which is the National Assembly. It is only the National Assembly that can review the budget and we have begun the process.

“I would like to refresh the memory of those erring MDAs or officers of the Executive that sections 80-84 of the 1999 constitution (as amended) confer appropriation powers on the parliament as well as its responsibilities over the national purse. So, nobody should engage any unlawful act concerning the budget.”

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