Members of the House of Representatives yesterday called on President Muhammadu Buhari to forward to the National Assembly proposals for a new revenue allocation formula in view of the current economic realities in the country.
The House said the need to revise the existing revenue allocation arrangement in the country was informed by the provision contained in the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission’s (RMAFC), which requires periodic review.
The current revenue sharing arrangement in the country sees federal government taking 52.68 percent, with states having. 26.72 percent, while local governments receive 20.60 percent during monthly revenue allocations of the Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) chaired by the vice president.
The lawmakers arrived at the resolution following a motion by Rotimi Agunsoye (APC, Lagos), that the revenue allocation law was enacted in 1982 but only amended in 1992, seven years before the coming to life of the 1999 constitution.
Rep Agunsoye said “section 6 (1) (b) of the revenue mobilisation allocation and fiscal commission act, Cap. R7, laws of the federation of Nigeria, 2004 prescribes for a certain committee within the agency to review the revenue allocation formula from time to time, to reflect current realities.”
The 1992 amended Act, he said, prescribes for the deduction of various percentages totaling about 7.5 per cent and also referred to as special fund, which was adjudged unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
Therefore, he said, “Section 162 (2) of the constitution requires the president, on the recommendation of the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission to submit a proposal for a new revenue allocation formula to the National Assembly for consideration and passage into law.”
The implication of failing to review the formula to the contemporary realities, according to the mover of the motion, will pose frequent financial threats and hardships to the fiscal relationship between the three tiers of government in the country.
But the House noted that since the RMAFC had done its part by submitting to the 7th Assembly the proposed new allocation formula, the president should urgently forward the new document to the National Assembly for further works.
On his part, Rep Tahir Monguno flayed the passage of the motion, saying that as a matter of law, such a call cannot be done by way of motion as any tier of government that is not satisfied with the present arrangement can seek redress in the court.
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