Saraki, who spoke at the budget presentation by Buhari however reassured Nigerians that the National Assembly would work assiduously to ensure speedy passage of the proposed N7.298trn in the 2017 budget.
He said the commitment on behalf of the 8th NASS was being pushed by the consciousness of huge responsibility that the present economic situation puts on the leaders and equally driven by the urgency to alleviate the sufferings of our people.
“We are confident that we are receiving from you a very well articulated budget proposal.
“We assure you Mr President and all Nigerians that not even a single minute will be wasted on our side in ensuring we get the budget approved,” Saraki said in an address with which he welcomed President Buhari to present the 2017 budget proposal to a joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja.
Nigeria’s Federal Government has proposed a record N7.298 trillion budget for fiscal year 2017, some 20.8 percent raise from N6.8trillion for 2016.
President Buhari called it a “Budget of economic recovery and growth” in which government is proposing an oil benchmark for 2017 at $42.50, daily oil production volume 2.2 million barrel as well as exchange of $US305 to a naira.
Saraki told the president and his colleagues at the NASS that the Nigerian people who they represent in different constituencies are looking forward to them to alleviate their present economic sufferings.
“There is hardship in the land, we can see it, we can feel it.
“The people of Nigeria will pardon us if we do some things wrong. But will not pardon us if we do nothing at all.
“They don’t want to know our political parties, they have trusted their faith in our hands and they need us now more than ever to justify that trust,” the Senat President reiterated.
Though he acknowledged their individual differences in terms of opinion issues, he reassured that the lawmakers would work with one common purpose
His words, “I wish to reassure Mr president that the National Assembly will continue to seek opportunities to deepen this relationship because we are convinced that it is only by working together that our country can make the progress that we desire.
“It is at a time like this when we are challenged that we need to develop a friendship and new relationships.
“No one can clap with one hand and expects to be heard,” Saraki maintained.
He therefore encouraged the executive to continue its engagement plans across all sectors of the country especially the Niger Delta citizens and other parts where instability is rife.