The Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Friday, cautioned President Mohammadu Buhari against taking the $30 billion foreign loan proposed by the administration, saying there was no guarantee the loan would be repaid in the remaining two years in the life of the administration.
Sanusi, who spoke at a one-day dialogue forum organised by the Savannah Centre for Diplomacy, Democracy & Development (SCDDD) supported by Ford Foundation, in Abuja, advised the government to be focus and make more investment in the economy instead of seeking for foreign loan.
The Emir, who however said he was not totally against the government’s asking for foreign loan, suggested instead that, “If we can get it at concessionary it is good,” adding, “But if you want to get the money, the government should look elsewhere.”
Sanusi who said “Let me make this issue clear, I will be happy if they get the loan to invest in the power sector, energy and road,” however, expressed concerned that, if the government would pay back the $30 billion in two years even though they cannot raise $2 billion after two years in office.
According to him, “If we cannot raise $2 billon in two years and you want to borrow $30 billion in two years to the end of the life of the administration. The government should rather pay more attention to investment and support the private sectors to grow the economy”.
“The economy that has five exchange rates can’t borrow $30 billion. They can’t lend you the $30 billion when you have five foreign exchange rates and with the current bombing of oil pipelines by the Niger Delta militants. So, on which foreign exchange rate can you get the loan?”
He said the nation’s foreign exchange lacks credibility, thus federal government needed to embrace private sector investments as means to grow the economy out of recession.
Sanusi emphasised that oil cannot help the nation out of the current economic situation and it would “never make Nigeria rich.”
He noted that the country’s population continued to grow to over 40 million people since 2015, yet government found it hard to increase capital expenditure.