The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on the National Assembly to ensure the prudent use of the N850 billion loan it approved for the Federal Government on Tuesday.
Recall that the Senate on Tuesday approved President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for N850 billion loan from the Capital Market to finance projects in the 2020 budget.
It further mandated its Committees on Finance and Appropriation to liaise with the Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmad for details of the loan.
Reacting, the party in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, in Abuja, also advised the presiding officers of the Senate to ensure prompt repayment of the loan.
Ologbondiyan expressed concerns over what he described as hasty approval of the N850 billion loan as requested by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said that the party was concerned that in spite of the huge natural and human resources at the disposal of the country, the government was still accumulating loans, without repayment plans.
Ologbondiyan also expressed worry over the transparency and management of the country’s loans.
“The PDP, therefore, charges the Senate Presiding officers to note that in approving this loan, the nation holds them responsible to ensure strict oversight monitoring of the handling of the money.
“This is especially as it is being sourced from the capital market, which hosts investments by private individuals and firms.
“The Senate must ensure judicious use of the funds as well as prompt repayment.
“This is because our nation cannot afford any default, as such is capable of crippling the capital market and worsening the economic hardship already being faced by Nigerians,” he said.
Ologbondiyan advised the Federal Government to articulate innovative ways to create wealth and plug wastes, instead of resorting to borrowing.
He said what was expected of the government at a time such as this was to immediately cut on luxury.
The PDP spokesperson also advised the government to slash the number of presidential appointees, cut down huge allowances and maintain a lean budget that would centre on health, research and growth of the economy among other critical needs.
“The PDP, therefore, urges all stakeholders, particularly fiscal transparency groups, the Nigeria Corporate World and management of the capital market to protect Nigerians by closely monitoring the performance of the loan.
“This is to guarantee effective management and prompt repayment,” Ologbondiya added.