Nigeria’s two foremost political parties on Wednesday locked horns over controversies arising from the recent loan request made by the Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government.
Buhari had in a letter on Tuesday asked the Nation Assembly to approve $4.054bn and €710m ($$839m) loans said to be an addendum to the earlier one approved by the federal parliament in April this year.
The opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) like most critics ànd financial experts raised alarm, condemning the borrowing spree.
PDP, on its part, said that the NASS must be warned against approving the request, which it said could set the country’s debt profile skyrocketing without a feasible repayment plan.
“Our party holds it as an act of wickedness that individuals who know that they will be leaving office in less than two years will be accumulating debts instead of seeking ways to reduce the liability they have brought upon our nation,” PDP had said same Tuesday through its National Spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan.
But in a sharp rebuke, APC on Wednesday said PDP has no moral justification to criticize the borrowings having looted the country for 16 years rather than spending on infrastructure and economic growth as, according to it, Mr Buhari-led government is doing.
“Borrowings by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government are for the good of the country,” National Secretary, Senator John Akpanudoedehe wrote.
“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 phoney 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,” the statement read in part.