The House of Representatives has urged the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission to advice President Goodluck Jonathan on the need to submit the revenue formula to the National Assembly.
This resolution followed a motion moved by Rep. Aliyu Madaki which was unanimously adopted in Abuja on Wednesday.
Leading the debate, Madaki noted that Section 162 (2) of the 1999 Constitution provided that the president upon receipt of advice from RMAFC, should table before the National Assembly the proposals for allocation from the federation account.
According to him, the third schedule of the constitution allows for the review of existing revenue formula and principles in operation to ensure conformity with changing realities.
He noted that the existing revenue formula in use was the “Allocation on Revenue Federation Account Moderation Order, 2002.
He argued that the existing revenue formula modification order 2002 has been modified twice without the inputs of the National Assembly.
Madaki also alleged that the RMAFC was yet to fulfill a constitutional responsibility as stipulated by the constitution, while explaining that the essence of the motion was to compel the RMAFC to advise the president to send the revenue formula to the National Assembly.
Rep. Abubakar Momoh opined that both states and local government councils should be allowed to play roles that were beneficiary to them and advised that the house should go extra mile to ensure that the matter was given urgent attention.
However, the house has adjourned plenary till Nov. 13, to enable members participate in the public hearing sessions on the review of the 1999 Constitution scheduled for Nov. 10, in the 360 Federal Constituencies.
Meanwhile, the Senate on Wednesday in a related development resolved that President Goodluck Jonathan’s request for the approval of the Medium Term External Borrowing Plan undergo further legislative work at committees level.
The senate, therefore, referred to the Finance Committee and the Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, Jonathan’s request for inclusion and approval of 7.9 billion dollars external loans to undertake proposed Pipeline Projects.
The senators, however, cautioned that effective monitoring system be deployed by the Upper Chamber to ensure actual utilisation of the funds for the listed projects.
Leading the debate on the motion, the Senate Leader, Sen. Victor Ndoma-Egba, said the projects were special initiatives spanning critical sectors of the economy.
He said they would enhance the growth and employment activities geared toward transforming the fortunes of Nigerians among others.
The Deputy Senate President, Sen. Ike Ekweremadu, said that there was nothing wrong with the country borrowing so long as the borrowed money would be properly utilised for the purpose intended.
He said “what is important about borrowing is the actual utilisation. If we borrow and apply them for the purposes that are stated here, then it is good for the country.
Sen. Ita Enang called for even spread of the projects across the country to ensure that Nigerians were the main beneficiaries. He added that the projects should be in areas of infrastructure and industrial development capable of generating revenue for the country.
The request was referred to the two committees for further legislative work and to submit their report within one week.