President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has said that the Senate would approve President Muhammadu Buhari’s request to borrow $29.96 billion.
He gave the indication while addressing a gathering of reporters on Monday in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
The Senate President said, “The question of whether we are going to pass the loan request of the Executive arm of government; yes.
“If you don’t have money and you have projects that after you do them they will not only provide the infrastructure that you need but also spin money, nothing will really militate against the passage.”
The 8th Senate led by former Senate President Bukola Saraki had rejected President Buhari’s loan request in 2016 due to the lack of details.
Senator Lawan, however, noted that the President has learned his lesson and has provided that necessary details of what the loan would be used for in his new request.
He explained that the Senate would not only approve the loan request of the President but also ensure strict oversight to make sure it was used for the purpose intended.
“But one thing is we are going to be critical that every cent that is borrowed is tied to a project,” the Senate President added.
He denied the claims that he had earlier said the country does not need to borrow money following the passage of the Production Sharing Contract Amendment Bill and the Finance Bill.
According to him, the production sharing contract bill is expected to generate about $2 billion dollars for the country while the finance bill is expected to increase Nigeria’s revenue generation.
In spite of this, Lawan stressed that it does not stop the Federal Government from borrowing to better the lives of the people.
“I didn’t say that because we have passed the Production Sharing Contract Amendment Bill, that Nigeria doesn’t need to borrow. I can’t remember saying anything like that.
“It is the same with the Finance Bill. But one thing I said is that with the passage of the Production Sharing Contract Bill, Nigeria will get more revenues,” the Senate President told the press conference.
His statement comes on the heels of President Buhari’s letter to the National Assembly, requesting to borrow $29.96 billion.