SENATE REJECTS BUHARI 30BN LOAN PLAN

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ABUJA- THE Senate on Tuesday unanimously
threw out plans by President Muhammadu
Buhari to engage in external borrowing of
$29.960billion for execution of key
infrastructural projects across the country
between 2016 and 2018.
The Senate did not even discuss it as it was
killed immediately it was mentioned as an
executive communication by Senate Leader,
Senator Ali Ndume “that the Senate do consider
the request of the President Commander in Chief
on the 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing Rolling
Plan.”
Soon after Ndume’s remarks, Senate President
Bukola Saraki now puts it to Vote and the Nays
had it.
Senator Saraki who was surprised and trying to
give President Buhari a soft landing, decided to
put it into vote the second time and the Nays
still had it and he ruled.
It would be recalled that President Muhammadu
Buhari had on Tuesday last week written to the
National Assembly seeking for the approval of
external borrowing plan of $29.960billion for
execution of key infrastructural projects across
the country between 2016 and 2018.
The letter titled, “Request for Approval of Federal
Government 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing
( Rolling) Plan” was read on the floor of the
Senate”
President Buhari had explained in the letter that
external borrowing plan would be targeted at
projects which cut across all sectors with
special emphasis on infrastructure, Agriculture,
Health, Education , Water supply , Growth and
employment generation , poverty reduction
through social safety net programmes and
governance and financial management reforms
etc.
According to him,” the total cost of the projects
and programmes under the borrowing (rolling)
plan is $29.960billion made up of proposed
projects and programmes loan of $11.274billion,
Special National Infrastructure projects
$10.686billion, Euro bonds of $4.5 billion and
Federal Government budget support of
$3.5billion “.
The President who also explained that the loan
was very necessary in view of the serious
infrastructural deficit, the nation is facing, said,
“Considering the huge infrastructure deficit
currently being experienced in the country and
the enormous financial resources required to fill
the gap in the face of dwindling resources and
the inability of our annual budgetary provisions
to bridge the deficit, it has become necessary to
resort to prudent external borrowing to bridge
the financing gap, which will largely be applied
to key infrastructure projects namely Power,
Railway and roads projects among others.”

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