The Peoples Democratic Party has knocked the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Abdullahi Adamu, for saying the Federal Government can borrow “from here to eternity”, Punch reports.
The PDP spokesman, Debo Ologunagba, said it was irresponsible for the party leader to justify the loans which he said was for consumption.
The nation’s external debts currently stands at over N41.60trn and President Muhammadu Buhari had been criticised for borrowing to execute projects across the country.
Speaking on a programme on Trust Television on Monday, Adamu had said countries like the United States and the United Kingdom borrow from international financial institutions to meet their needs.
Adamu argued that like other countries, Nigeria could borrow for infrastructural development.
He said, “I remember a programme we had here, I told you and I thought you believed me that I have no quarrel, issues with government borrowing. Government can borrow from here to eternity. The American government borrows, the Canadian government borrows, the United Kingdom borrows, France borrows money from the World Bank and such other institutions.
“You also have to appreciate the fact of the level of revenue accruing to the government, oil is the main thing. We want to see how best we can diversify. These issues affecting the revenue accruing to the government are not our making no matter how good we are, they happen.
“When some countries sneeze we catch a cold. The Ukrainian crisis with Russia is having an impact on our economy and even in bigger economies than our own so why do we limit ourselves in our thinking.”
Adamu said some senators in the APC are supporting the impeachment bid against Buhari because they did not win tickets to contest in the 2023 polls.
But Ologunagba faulted Adamu’s stance, insisting that the APC-led regime had misappropriated the loans it took from foreign lenders.
The PDP spokesman contended that past PDP administrations also borrowed but added that it was for a good cause, noting that they paid back.
He stated, “Nigerians knew when they were free of debt, they knew when the nation paid off its debts and they knew the government that was borrowing. Borrowing responsibly and investing in people is good but when you borrow and you convert it into personal use. Their own is to borrow and steal, the PDP borrowed and invested.
“The transformation in the airports was the project of the PDP. We opened up the economy; the privatisation scheme opened up the economy and Nigeria was almost the number one destination point for investors. So, it is irresponsible and we are not expecting anything more from the APC government other than this level of impunity and recklessness.
“It is completely irresponsible for the APC chairman to say they can borrow till eternity. Why would the chairman of the party say that other than the fact they have complete disregard for us, for knowledge and for capacity? Borrowing is part of life but you must borrow responsibly.”
Ologunagba noted that the ruling party had plunged Nigeria into a debt trap and further alleged that the Buhari regime ought to apologise to the citizens for its misadventure.
He added, “They (APC) borrow for consumption, they borrow to pay for frivolous trips abroad and for irresponsible junketing all over the world. Borrowing is meant to be for development, for infrastructural development. This is the most corrupt government ever in the history of this country.
“Everybody in the APC should be ashamed, they should be apologising to the Nigerian people for lying, for defrauding us. The good thing is that hope is on the way. Nigerians can make a comparison, they know which government borrowed responsibly and invested in human capital development, infrastructural development and education because without education, no country grows. This is the sixth month of the ASUU strike and the government has failed to address it.”
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