The Presidency has attributed the slow 2016 budget implementation to the continuous destruction of oil installations in the Niger Delta region by militants.
The hint was dropped on Sunday night by the Special Adviser to president Mohammadu Buhari on media and publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina adding that the economy had been largely affected.
Recall that the 2016 budget was signed into law by president Muhammadu Buhari on May 6, 2016, but unfortunately, till now, Nigerians are yet to feel Its impact. However, while speaking at a phone-in programme on Channels television yesterday night, Adesina revealed that the federal government had began negotiations with the militants in order to find long-lasting solution to the restiveness in the region.
“Yes the budget has been passed. The intention is to implement that budget as much as possible but then the circumstances are making it difficult because projections are not being met because of what is happening in the Niger Delta and other parts of the economy.
“But as much as possible the government would still adhere to that project as much as revenue will permit and allow.
“Every option is on the table. There was never a time anything was ruled out. All the options were on the table.
“You will recall that when some South South leaders visited the President led by King Alfred Diete-Spiff, he also disclosed that he had encouraged the security agencies to dialogue with the militant and the leadership of that region.
“So there was never a time that anything was ruled out, since the insurgency began there had always been dialogue.”
There had been incessant bombing of national oil and gas assets by the Niger Delta Avengers, NDA which has grossly affected oil production in Nigeria.
The militant group revealed in an interview with Vanguard on 8th July, that they suspended hostilities in good faith to see if the government of the day was speaking sincerely when it announced its dialogue initiative. However, until they resumed operations, nobody reached out them and the government did not establish any genuine platform to address their grievances.