Buhari Seeks NASS Approval For External Borrowing
President Buhari is also seeking the approval of the National Assembly for an external borrowing of 29.9 billion dollars to ensure the prompt implementation of projects.
In a letter addressed to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, President Buhari says the projects cut across agriculture, health, education, and water supply.
“Considering the huge infrastructural 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 budget to bridge the infrastructure deficit, it has become necessary to resort to prudent external borrowing to bridge the financial gap which will largely be applied to key infrastructure projects namely power, railway and road project amongst others.
“The total cost of the projects and programmes under the borrowing plan is 29.96 billion US dollars, made up of proposed projects and programmes loans of 11.274 billion US dollars, special national infrastructure projects of 10.686 billion US dollars, Eurobonds of 4.5 billion US dollars and federal government budget support of 3.5 billion US dollars,” Speaker Dogara read.
Also on Monday, President Muhammadu Buhari sought the approval of the National Assembly for virement of funds appropriated for special intervention to be used to fund some recurrent and capital items.
In the letter read on the floor of the Senate and House of Representatives Chambers, President Buhari says the request is necessary because of the shortfalls in provisions for personnel costs and inadequate provision for the Amnesty Programme.
President Buhari also stated that the fund virement was needed to cover for the inadequacies in the National Youth Service Corps budget where an additional 8.5 billion Naira is required to cover the backlog of 129,469 corps members who are currently due for call up but would otherwise be left out till next year due to funding constraints.