Atiku Abubakar has asked the national assembly, not to approval fresh loan requests for “projects that are not viable”, DAILY TIMES gathered.
He made this known in a letter he sent to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, urging the lawmakers to stop approving loans that will not generate any form of income for the country.
Atiku said Nigeria will not be able to pay her debts if it continues to borrow at this rate, alleging that previous funds borrowed were used for things that are not viable.
The Debt Management Office (DMO) puts Nigeria’s total public debt as of March 2020 at $79.3 billion, while external debt was $27.6 billion.
Despite these concerns of Nigeria’s rising debt, Lawan asserted in June that federal lawmakers have approved about $28 billion loan requests of President Muhammadu Buhari in the last one year.
In the letter, received on August 25, Abubakar, PDP presidential candidate in the 2019 elections, said Nigerians cannot sit back and watch “while our nation teeters towards financial peril.
“On May 29, 2015, Nigeria’s total national debt stood approximately at N12 trillion. As of August 2020, our national debt has tripled to N28.63 trillion. Even more alarming is the fact that the foreign debt portion of our national debt has risen from less than $10 billion on May 29, 2015, to almost $30 billion in August 2020,” he said.
“A further cause for concern is the fact that not all of these debts are necessary. A study of the use to which these monies have been put to will show that much of it has gone towards items or projects that are non-productive or viable.”
The former vice-president added that the future of Nigeria’s youth and unborn generations has been “placed in what could very well be bondage-like conditions.
“As such, in view of your role as a check on the excesses of other arms of government, may I suggest that going forward, the National Assembly should refuse to approve any new loan requests, where such loans are to be spent on projects or items that are not income-generating or production-based, or indeed viable,” he said.