Reps approve Buhari’s $22.7 billion loan request

Members of the House of Representatives at a Special plenary on Tuesday 28/4/2020 (Photo: Speaker’s Office)
Members of the House of Representatives at a Special plenary on Tuesday 28/4/2020 (Photo: Speaker’s Office)

The House of Representatives on Tuesday approved President Muhammadu Buhari’s request to take $22.7 billion in foreign loans.

The House approved the request after it considered the report of its committee on aids, loans and debt management.

President Buhari had said in 2019 that the loan was intended to fund key infrastructure in the country.

The Senate had earlier given its nod to the request in March. Lawmakers at the House of Representatives had earlier kicked against the bill, forcing debates to be suspended.

The lawmakers, especially those of the south-east caucus, complained about the government’s failure to include projects in the region amongst those to be financed from the loan.

However, following debates that were accompanied by pleas from House Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, the loan proposal has now been approved.

Last month, both Houses approved an ₦850 billion loan proposal from the president, which is to be sourced from domestic markets “to fund critical capital projects in the 2020 budget.”

Last week, Mr Buhari also wrote to both chambers, seeking the approval of another $5.513 billion foreign loans.

Nigeria’s rising debt profile, as of September 30, 2019, was ₦26.2 trillion. Of this amount, total domestic debts is about ₦18 trillion, or 68.45 per cent. About ₦8 trillion are owed to foreign lenders.



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