Nigeria has a period of five years with a two and half years as a grace period to pay the $3.4bn loan recently approved and disbursed by the International Monetary Fund to help mitigate the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic and also to sort out balance of payment issues.
According to the Managing Director of IMF, Kristalina Georgieva, during an interview with CNBC Africa, the loan attract a 1% per cent interest was approved on April 28, 2020, and disbursed barely a week later.
“The conditions are quite favourable. The repayment period is five years, up to two and half years is a grace period and the interest on the loan is 1%,” she added
In her statement, the IMF boss said, “We have already disbursed the money to Nigeria. In emergency assistance, once the board approves, we disburse within days to the country and it goes to the Central Bank in dollars before it’s converted to naira for the Federal Government’s use.”
Georgieva said that there was a need for all receivers of the emergency funds in Nigeria to keep receipts of expenditure. She pointed out that Nigerians should demand accountability from its leaders in the spending of the emergency funds.
According to her, the funds could not afford to have credibility and accountability take the back seat in the course of the coronavirus crisis.
Going further, she said that Nigeria had already met and exceeded the safeguards for disbursement of the funds.
This loan is the single largest disbursement by the Bretton Woods institution to any country that has been ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic.