By Idowu Abdullahi,
The Senate has approved the $22.7billion external loan request made by the President, Muhammadu Buhari, which he stated was with aim to fund critical infrastructural projects under the 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing Plan.
The approval came after a closed-door session that lasted close to an hour by the upper legislative chamber on Thursday, following a heated debate on the President’s request during the plenary.
The approval was based on the Senator Clifford Ordia-led Committee on Local and Foreign Loans, two-item recommendation of approval of loan request by the house.
While commenting on the red chamber’s decision to approve $22.7billion external loan request, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, assured Nigerians that the loan funds would be channeled into specific developmental projects which were initial reason for the loan as stated in government’s budget for critical infrastructure projects under the 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing Plan.
According to him, the loan would be spent judiciously on projects that would impact Nigerians and position the country to compete globally in terms of infrastructure and human development, while calling on the senate committees to swing into action in ensuring strict oversight function on the approved amount.
Lawan called on the Buhari-led federal government to ensure transparency in all its dealings, especially concerning monies released as loan based on the request approval.