Barely 24 hours after seeking the approval of the N2.18 trillion Supplementary budget, President Bola Tinubu has sought the approval of the Senate for another $7.8 billion and another €100 million borrowing plan.
The request of the president was contained in a letter to the Senate, read during the plenary by the Senate President, GodsWill Akpabio, on Wednesday.
Earlier reports noted that the President on Tuesday (yesterday) presented another N2.18 trillion supplementary budget to the National Assembly.
The National Assembly had, a few months ago, approved the total of N819.5 billion presented by the president which amongst other things was for the provision of a N500 billion palliative package to cushion the effects of the recent economic policies of the Federal Government.
The letter from the President read, “The Senate may wish to note that the past administration approved the 2022 – 2024 borrowing plan at the Federal Executive Council which was held on the 15th day of May 2023.
“The project cut across all sectors with specific emphasis on infrastructure, agriculture, health, education, water supply, security and employment as well as financial management reforms, among others.
“The total facility of the projects and programmes under the borrowing plan is 7,864,508,559 dollars and then in Euro, 100 million euros respectively.”
The President’s letter noted, “The senate is invited to note that following the removal of fuel subsidy and its impact on the economy in the country, African Development Bank and the World Bank Group have indicated interest to assist the country in mitigating the economic shores and recent reforms with a sum of $1 billion and $2 billion respectively.
“In addition to the Federal Executive Council approved 2022-2024 external borrowing plan. Consequently, the required approval is 7,864,508,559 dollars and in terms of euros, 1000 million euros.
“I would like to underscore the fact that the projects and programmes borrowing plans were selected based on positive technical economic evaluations as well as the expected contribution to the social economic development of the country, including employment generation, skills acquisitions, supporting the emergence of more enterprenuers, poverty reduction and food security to improve the livelihood of an average Nigerian.”
The President in the letter further explained, “The projects and programmes will be implemented in all the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.
“In view of the present economic realities facing the country, it has become imperative that the resolve to using the external borrowing to breach the financing gap which will be applied to key infrastructure projects including power, railway, health among others.”
“Given the nature of these facilities and the need to consolidate the country to normalcy, it has become exigent to request the senate consideration and approval of the 2022- 2024 external borrowing plans to enable the government to deliver its responsibilities to Nigerians through expeditious disbursement and efficient projects implementation,” the letter added.