By: Taiwo Adeyemi
This year budget has created another exchange of tirade between two principalities – one domiciled in the Aso Rock villa and the other sitting inside the hallowed chamber. Year 2016 budget come with shout of padding being added to our political lexicon which resulted to gods suspending one of their own from coming to “shrine’’ for months. Jubrin Abdulmumin became the sacrificial lamb for raising alarm because all gods were angry with him. The following year budget of 2017 came with another mantra from the Emperor in the Aso Rock Villa alleging gods of inserting project “insertion” without discussion with the Villa’s Emperor.
The gods this year again did not only insert projects but cut down cost for projects, when the Emperor fired salvo at the gods for their act, gods reacted in unison through incantation a replicate of ‘’Fadeyi Oloro’’ in nollywood that ‘’we are not a rubber stamp parliament’’. They were not moved by Emperor’s allegations of cutting down cost for strategic projects that will help his consolidation on achievements of last budget. Almost all sectors suffered cost cut from the gods, health, education, housing, labour, economy, aviation. All were not spared from gods’ anger.
Strategic projects like Mambilla power project, Lagos-Ibadan expressway, second Niger bridge/ancillary roads, the East-West road, Itakpe-Ajaokuta rail project, etc. They were not moved by compassion for rehabilitation and additional security measures for the United Nations building by the FCT, Abuja, it was cut by 3.9 billion naira from 4 billion naira to 100 million naira, another setback to Nigeria commitment to United Nations.
Our gods that entered the “shrine” through our votes, some on the Emperor’s change wings jacked up their own share of the budget, an increment of 14.5 billion naira from 125 billion to 139.5 billion with 6,403 projects worth 578 billion naira without discussing with anybody. They are on the same page on this course, weather they shout ‘’Change’’ or ‘’Power’’, every god must eat from the cookie’s jar.
Why are gods treating Emperor and citizens like this? Our budget is politics and politics is budget. All gods must return to their constituencies with projects facilitated by them, lobbying a minister for projects or be at the mercy and whim of a minister to have a project in their constituencies will take a long time, they prefer to insert projects, cost it and pass it.