The Senate Committee on Gas, led by Senator Jarigbe Jarigbe, has called on President Bola Tinubu to promptly present a 2023 Supplementary Budget to the National Assembly to initiate his Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) project.
This request comes just 48 hours after Tinubu announced measures to mitigate the impact of fuel subsidy removal on Nigerians. The lawmakers emphasized that extra-budgetary spending is discouraged by law.
The committee chairman commended Tinubu for the CNG initiative but warned against spending taxpayers’ money without approval from the National Assembly for projects in the gas value chain, which is a cost-effective alternative to fossil fuels.
The senators also discouraged extra-budgetary expenditure through “Ways and Means,” stating that the legislature is ready to support and provide relief to the people.
Jarigbe praised Tinubu’s CNG revolution for powering vehicles and noted that it would alleviate citizens’ hardships. However, he stressed the need for a supplementary budget to fund the gas value chain, including CNG infrastructure, CNG vehicles, workshops, and training.
“The President should not embark on extra-budgetary expenditure because it will be inconsistent with the provisions of the law,” Jarigbe emphasized.
He mentioned that the National Assembly, under the leadership of Senate President Senator Godswill Akpabio, is committed to supporting the administration’s initiatives. He suggested that a 2023 supplementary budget would be more appropriate than the “Ways and Means” approach used by the previous administration, which has become a contentious issue at the Central Bank of Nigeria.
In his Independence Day speech, President Tinubu assured Nigerians that he was working to alleviate their hardships and mentioned the deployment of cheaper, safer CNG buses nationwide. These buses would operate at a fraction of current fuel prices, positively affecting transport fares. Tinubu also stated that new CNG conversion kits would be introduced soon to expedite the procurement process.