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Analysts decry dormant status of assented 2019 budget, 3 months on

The mystery status of the recent euphoria elicited by the screening and confirmation of 43 designate-ministers and the delays in their deployments to nearly moribund ministries has become a source of sleepless nights for development economists.

Already, analysts are disturbed on what kind of induction training the appointees are to undergo instead of their immediate deployments to ministries so as to rebound the economy by way of attending to mounting memos for either review or approvals that will lead to release of funds to rejig the dormant economy.

Besides, latest statement from the Federal Government indicates that ministers-designate would be inaugurated on August 21, 2019

From the views of analysts at Afrinvest Securities Limited; “The direction of Nigeria’s fiscal policy over the medium-term still hangs on a balance as ministers are yet to resume. While delay is costly, a more pressing concern would be seeing the government sustaining the policies of the past four years.”

To them, the Federal Government may be rehearsing the ugly fallout of five months delay in 2015 without the appointment of ministers which snowballed to the recession of 2016.

By calculation, with their so called induction training planned for August 15 and 16, and recent indication that inauguration would take place on August 21 which translates to their real deployment to respective ministries, it means that the economy had been in dormant status for more than three months as not less than 13 Wednesdays of Federal Executive Council (FEC) meetings since inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term in office on May 29, 2019, had been missed by an economy in dire need of revivial.

Given that FEC meetings; where strategic national economic development decisions and mainly major contract approvals that are statutorily beyond the powers of permanent secretaries are taken, it means that the economy has again, lost more than three months of fiscal policy administration.

Findings show that since May 29 inauguration, the economy had been in comatose as major contractual decisions far beyond the powers of permanent secretaries had continued to be in sleeping mood, a scenario that is very dangerous for an ailing economy like Nigeria.

Besides, the key questions so far raised for the Secretary to the Federal Government, Mr. Boss Mustapha on the demand for designate-ministers CVs and the induction training include; what kind of administrative and policy direction handbook will the screened ministers understudy when they do not know the respective ministries they are to head?

Again, does asking the designate-ministers to submit their current CVs in his office means that such documents were not first submitted even before sending their names to the Senate for screening or are there no synergy between the Office of the Secretary to the Federal Government and the presidency?