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Amidst criticism, Buhari justifies Nigeria’s over N46.25trn



Niger Republic will defend me after I leave office if… — President Buhari
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Amidst criticism trailing his administration for incurring a high debt profile, President Muhammadu Buhari has justified his actions, saying the infrastructures he facilitated were carefully executed in very transparent circumstances.

Nigeria’s debt burden at the moment stands at over $103.11b (N46.25t).

Data from the Debt Management Office (DMO) shows that Nigeria’s indebtedness to China has grown by 209 per cent in the last eight years, just as the DMO confirmed that the country’s total borrowing from the Asian giant climbed from $1.39b to $4.29b between June 2015, a month after the Buhari administration took over and December 2022.

Chinese loans account for 84.73 per cent of the country’s total loans, with the remaining 15.27 per cent coming from France, Japan, India, and Germany, according to the data from DMO.

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Speaking on Tuesday during the virtual launching of the second Niger Bridge, including three secretariats and one road project, Buhari explained that the debt are tied to physical projects across the nation.

“I share the concerns of Nigerians, the debts are tied to projects that have been executed in very transparent circumstances and are there for everyone to see. The wealth of other nations is traceable to their investments in infrastructure made possible by debts redeemed over decades.

“As we look at the debt profile, I urge us to also look at the assets and investment profiles, some of which were paid for by debt and some by investment income.”

According to the outgoing President, he made infrastructure development a key point of focus in his administration as a deliberate action to create wealth and make poverty alleviation easier.

Buhari also said: “We do not act on infrastructure by accident. It has been a deliberate choice for our government as a tool to fight poverty, to create economic growth and employment and to open the path of prosperity for our people.”

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