Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, stated that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is borrowing to develop world-class infrastructure that will benefit future generations of Nigerians.
On Thursday, the minister addressed at a town hall meeting in Borno State with Prof. Babagana Zulum and other stakeholders.
According to Mohammed, the Buhari government does not borrow for recurrent expenses or to pay salaries.
Buhari had written to the National Assembly just a few days before, requesting approval of another $4 billion and €710 million in external borrowing.
The president made his request in a letter to Senate President Ahmad Lawan, which was read in plenary.
The planned loan, according to Buhari, will be financed through sovereign loans from the World Bank, the French Development Agency, the EXIM Bank, and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
If granted, the loan will allow the Federal Government to fund essential infrastructure projects in various sectors across the country, according to Buhari.
“Naysayers have recently increased their criticism of the Buhari Administration for borrowing,” Mohammed remarked. These critics are deceitful. We are not borrowing to cover ongoing expenses or pay salaries. We are taking out loans to fund the construction of world-class infrastructure that will benefit future generations of Nigerians. And the loans we’ve borrowed have paid off handsomely.
“Today, the standard-gauge rail lines between Lagos and Ibadan as well as Abuja and Kaduna are running well. Today, we have new airport terminals in Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt. Today,the Itakpe-Warri rail line that was abandoned for decades is running.
“Today, we have well over 13,000km of federal roads under repair, rehabilitation and reconstruction. There is a road project in every state, Today, we have started the countdown to when the 2nd Niger Bridge, which successive administrations have built only on paper, will be completed. The list of projects we are handling with the loans we obtained is long.”