N720b loan plan: FG insensitive, borrowing to finance selfish agenda – Expert

The Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) Bonds Issuance Calendar for the fourth quarter of 2022, which contains a N720 billion borrowing plan for the time period, was released by the Debt Management Office (DMO) despite struggles to pay the existing N41.60 trillion debt.

Godwin Oyedokun, an economist and professor of management and accounting at Leads City University in Ibadan, responded to the development on Wednesday in an exclusive interview with newsmen, saying the Federal Government was callous and using borrowing to fund a self-serving agenda.

He pointed out that the infrastructure development in Nigeria as a result of the loans it has been borrowing has been minimal or nonexistent.

He bemoaned the fact that because they are so expensive in comparison to other places, most loans for infrastructure projects amount to nothing more than economic extortion.

According to him, “It is insensitive on the part of the government to be borrowing at this stage.

“They are borrowing for the next generation to pay because this administration has less than 9 months left.”

He noted that “borrowing for infrastructural development is not bad but over the years nothing has been achieved with the funds borrowed. Rather the government is borrowing to finance the internal/personal pocket of some people.”

He added that, “economic extortion has come into it because the loans are way too expensive compared to the amount that it would be done elsewhere”.

Recall that the Director General of the DMO, Mrs. Patience Oniha, revealed a month ago that the total debt profile for Nigeria as of March 2022 was N41.60 trillion.

Oniha said this during her appearance at an engagement a month ago on the 2023 – 2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Policy Paper held by the House of Representatives Committee on Finance.

As a defence to the borrowing spree outrage from Nigerians, she attributed increased debt stock to dwindling revenues and the deficit in the annual budget as approved by the National Assembly.

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