PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday, apologized to Nigerians over the persistent and biting fuel scarcity in the country and attributed the problem to market speculators and stakeholders who are resistant to change. He assured that the government was working hard to end the shortages urgently.
President Buhari who begged Nigerians while presenting the N6.08 trillion 2016 budget to a joint session of the National Assembly, said the government has not increased fuel price and that the pump price of fuel remains N87 per litre.
Meanwhile, the Senate, yesterday, amended the Appropriation Act of 2015 to extend implementation of 2015 budget from December 31, 2015 to March 31, 2016.
The President who started his address at 10.17am and ended it at 10.51 am, disclosed that 30 per cent of Nigeria’s annual budget will be committed to capital expenditure, even as he raised Capital Expenditure from N557 billion in 2015 to N1.8 trillion in the 2016 budget.
Having reviewed the trends in the global oil industry, he said the government decided to set a benchmark price of $38 per barrel and a production estimate of 2.2 million barrels per day for 2016, with plans to focus on non-oil revenues by broadening the tax base and improving the effectiveness of revenue collecting agencies. The government is projecting to realise N1.4 trillion as non-oil revenue.
President Buhari, who noted that the present administration projected a revenue target of N3.86 trillion for 2016 and recurrent expenditure of N2.43 trillion, said that the Federal Government also proposed to spend N1.66 trillion on foreign and domestic debt servicing.
The President also declared that his administration would fight corruption no matter how long it takes.