The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Mr Ita Enang, says 2018 will be a very robust year in executive-legislative relationship.
He gave the assurance when he briefed National Assembly correspondents in Abuja on Tuesday.
According to Enang, this year is going to be a very robust year in the executive-legislative relationship because Nigerians will see harmony, concord, cooperation and the best of relationship between the executive and the legislature.
“You are not going to have uncommon compromise you are going to have engagement not something combustible,” he said.
While answering questions on alteration of budgets, commonly called, padding, Enang said, in all his legislative years, padding was a new word in the legislative lexicon “so we have to define it as a new matter.
“In my opinion, padding is an illegal or unlawful insertion by a person who is not expected to do it into a legal, purely completed legislative document.
‘’Therefore, unless a bill has been passed and forwarded to Mr President for assent, there can be no padding.
“If the bill had been forwarded to the president and something is inserted into that before it is assented to by any person and something is added different from what is in the Votes and Proceedings of the Senate and the House of Representatives, is what constitutes padding.
“On the part of the executive, if a bill is forwarded to Mr President, be it a bill on any matter or budget and the president or the governor, something is inserted by the governor or by the executive into the bill before assenting, that is padding.
“Again, if after a bill has been assented to by the president and forwarded to the National Assembly for publication and gazetting and somebody inserts something into it before publication in the gazette that is padding.
“Because you are adding an illegal, unlawful entry into a document that is legal and that is contamination of the document.”
He further said that the case of the 2018 Budget that was pending before the legislature, the executive was free to make input and that did not constitute padding.
“Whenever the executive presents a bill before the House of Assembly or the National Assembly, that instrument is work in progress, it is a draft. In the course of considering legislation, there can be no padding because either side can make input,”Enang said.
He noted that the legislature had been very active, very productive in terms of legislation passed.
Enang, however, urged both the executive and the legislature to “do the work and politick less; concentrating in legislation and least concentrating on other matters”. (NAN)