By Salish Ibrahim
The history of Ninth National Assembly especially the nation’s upper chamber will remain unpleasant to the millions of Nigerians to some extent the way its succumbing in any request of debt brought to they notice by the president.
Within the life span of the present administration from 2015 till date the nation’s National Assembly approved all the loan requested forwarded before them within eyes blinking. This act of “We Hear And We See” attitudes displaying by lawmakers makes them too uncompromising as people Representatives and not anchor well for them as they lost self integrity of protecting electorates interest. The worst of all they allowing future of the country mortgaging going by number of debt accrue by the PMB’s administration.
Why they mortgage the future of the country and the well being of the citizens which are supposed to protect and one of their primary reasons of being in chamber. however, the current concern, who will pay these huge debts? Will the burden being leave by the administration not too weighty for the lean shoulders of our children and unborn? one is surprised too about the speed with which both Chambers approve the request.
According to the Debt Management office statement on Public Debt Data as at December 31, 2020 issued on Tuesday, 16 March 2021 13:21 on it website said Nigeria’s Total Public Debt as at December 31, 2020 was N32.915 Trillion. While total Public Debt to Gross Domestic Product as at same month was 21.61% which is within Nigeria’s new Limit of 40%.
Last year in April President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the Senate to approved request to secure a fresh loan of N850 billion to fund some projects in the 2020 budget from the domestic capital market to ensure adequate funds to finance projects in the budget.
Once again Nigerians were cough unaware with another efforts of PMB’s administration to seek approval to take another $6.1 billion loan or N2.343 trillion from bilateral and multilateral organisations to fund the deficit in the 2021 budget. Also the National Assembly approved loan request of $1.5billion and €995million for the Buhari administration earlier in this year.
The annual debt servicing had made it impossible to provide basic amenities and infrastructure without resorting to more borrowing. Nigeria was committing half of its foreign earnings to servicing its current level of indebtedness. The country impending to bankruptcy. No entity can survive while devoting 50% of its revenue to debt servicing.
In spite of all this debt, the realities on ground did not show any correlation and there is need for the stopping this trend of loan spree by the administration require the national assembly to monitor the executive on prompt utilisation of new loans for the specified purposes.
What are the guarantees present administration, and the subsequent administration will have the capacity to repay without making us and our unborn children are likely to remains slaves and beggars in our own country by the creditor nations. Need for the earlier starts looking for credible answers to these burning questions, the better for us all.
What really surprising Nigerians is whether our lawmakers understanding the gravity of their actions in mortgage the future of the country more because contemplating an increase in Nigeria’s debt rate is bad timing and inconsistent with current economic reality. Already the administration had plans to sell some assets of the federal government to finance the 2021 budget. Why not utilise the money going to be accrue from sell some assets to finance the budget to be honest with reality taken fresh loan of $6.1 billion or N2.343 trillion debt request? is uncalled for.
History will judges legislative arm for compromising its responsibilities in checkmating this reckless loans spree by the government. Both executive and legislative will be held responsible toward jeopardy Nigerians and unborn one future. These reckless approval to government loans spree request by the chambers clearly demonstrated they gross insensitivity to citizens.
Ibrahim writes in from Kano and can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org