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Vol 54 No 23

Published 15th November 2013


Politics versus the budget

Promises of a ten per cent cut in state spending at the start of the election campaign defy political gravity

No official reason was given for the postponement of President Goodluck Jonathan's budget speech to the National Assembly, to 19 November. But it is safe bet to assume that last-minute arguments among ministries and departments over spending plans played a part. The hard-headed Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and her team have drawn up a federal budget for 2014 that envisages a ten per cent cut in state spending. Yet the political backdrop – the formal start of the national election campaign – is not propitious for such austerity.

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