The All Progressives Congress (APC) is defending President Buhari’s borrowing, stating that taking the foreign facility is “for the good of the country”.
It said this in response to the PDP’s criticism of President Buhari’s fresh application for a foreign loan. On Tuesday, Nigeria’s President sent a letter to the Senate requesting approval for the borrowing of $4 billion and €710 million in external loans.
The party said in a statement signed by the treasurer of its caretaker extraordinary convention planning committee (CECPC), Senator John James Akpanudoedehe, that borrowings under the APC-led administration had been prudently and transparently used for their intended purpose. The APC maintained that borrowing under the APC was based on genuine needs and on the necessity of strengthening the foundation of the national economy in order to achieve the government’s primary objective of raising the living standards of the citizens.
Here is a portion of the statement;
“Borrowings by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government is for the good of the country as the money is used to develop critical infrastructure that is stimulating economic growth, generating jobs, reducing poverty, and improving the general well-being of the citizenry. Unlike in the brazen looting days of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the borrowings are designed to finance the deficit in the 2021 budget to enable the realization of the Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan that touches key sectors such as infrastructure development, boosting healthcare services, strengthening agriculture to deepen food security, more energy generation and continued tackling of the ravaging COVID-19 global pandemic. From the forgone, it is abundantly clear that the borrowing is hinged on genuine needs and based on the necessity to strengthen the foundation of the national economy and achieve the desired primary purpose of the government of uplifting the living standard of the citizens. It was in PDP’s era that loans to fund power generation, purchase arms and ammunition to fight a raging insurgency were misappropriated and diverted to fund PDP activities; and the borrowed money ultimately found its way to the pockets of cronies, friends and family members of administration officials. Nigeria is still servicing a $460 million loan taken from China to fund a phony Abuja Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) contract awarded in August 2010. Nigerians should also reflect and recall that the PDP had in its 16 years of misrule pushed the country into a dark ditch of insolvency, and a period in which most state governments could not pay workers’ salaries, not even the minimum wage, or settle contractors’ bills and cater for patients in hospitals, to name a few. In a welcome and commendable change, the Buhari-led administration through its economic management skills bailed out states to pay salary backlogs and embarked on large-scale infrastructure development projects that stimulated the economy and exited the era of insolvency and recession caused by the ineptitude of the PDP administration. The APC welcomes the continued and multi-partisan cooperation which exists between the executive and legislature on national issues. This will ensure good governance, particularly in the area of economic development. The country and citizens are the ultimate beneficiaries.”