Bayo Oyewale, LOKOJA
A Lokoja based Human Rights Activist and Executive Director, Centre for Human Rights and Conflict Resolution (CHRC), Comrade Idris Miliki Abdul has expressed worries over non implementation of oversight functions by the Kogi State House of Assembly.
While speaking in a chat with our correspondent in Lokoja, Comrade Abdul stated that since the 2017 budget have been signed into law on the 22nd February, 2017 no genuine oversight function has been carried out by the legislators.
He explained that a lot of activities are going on in which the pronouncements and response of the legislators are needed urgently.
“In the last one year or there about a lot of monies have come into the state, particularly the bailout and Paris Club refund and the real amount that came to the State and how it was expended was not known by the General public. It is the duty of the legislators to carry out over sight functions on the executive based on their appropriation.
He explained that parliament is the hallmark of democracy all over the world, stressing that Nigeria is not an exception.
“The challenges of legislative oversight in budgetary process in Nigeria are legion. First is the need to ensure that budget formulations and implementation at the federal, state and local government levels impact positively on the lives of the citizens*
The activist however noted that this undoubtedly can happen if the legislature which has absolute oversight functions is adequately equipped with the desire capacity to discharge it statutory functions
He lamented that undoubtedly Kogi State is facing a lot of challenges on budget implementation under the current administration.
“The Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) has dictated by Fiscal responsibility Act. It is MTEF that should dictate the performance of the budget and to guide in budgetary preparation. It is constitutional duty that must be adhered to” he stressed.
“It is a known fact that in the past two years, the current Assembly in Kogi State, oversight functions have not been taken very seriously through the various committee of the State House of Assembly.”