PRESIDENT Mohammed Buhari has urged Nigerians to consider the assets and investments gained in the last eight years when discussing the country’s huge debt profile.
As Buhari maintained, debts that his administration acquired funded many major assets and investments.
Buhari said this in a statement posted on Twitter on Saturday, May 27.
The ICIR had reported that every Nigerian would owe N384,864 by the time the president leaves office due to the country’s spiralling debt profile.
According to the Debt Management Office (DMO), the Buhari administration would, by its persistent borrowings, be leaving a humongous debt of N77 trillion for the incoming administration.
Data from the Budget Office of the Federation showed that the total budget deficit would hit N47.43 trillion under President Buhari.
According to the figures, deficit financing has risen by 370.54 per cent, moving from N2.41 trillion in 2016 to N11.34 trillion in 2023.
Buhari, who is set to hand over to the incoming administration on Monday, May 29, asked Nigerians to consider the assets and investments when looking at the current debts.
The President pointed out that his administration doubled Nigeria’s infrastructure stock to gross domestic product (GDP) from 20 per cent to more than 40 per cent.
He said, “As we look at Nigeria’s debt profile, I urge us to also look at the assets and investment profiles, some of which were paid for by debt and some by investment income.
“In eight years, I am proud to say that we have doubled Nigeria’s stock of infrastructure to GDP from about 20% to over 40%.
“This growth is no small undertaking given that it was recorded amid a plunge in global oil prices, a recession in the country, and a war in Europe.
“This happened when global oil prices plunged to almost zero when we encountered a recession that was not predicted, when we dealt with a pandemic that was unforeseen and when we are still grappling with the global effects of an ongoing war in Europe.”
He noted that the road out of poverty was much more arduous without investing in infrastructure.
“The wealth and prosperity of many nations, especially post-war Europe, was built largely on infrastructure and debt redeemed over decades. Some of the projects are commercially self-liquidating,” he added.