Peter Obi demands breakdown on utilisation of borrowed funds

The 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has urged the Federal Government to do a detailed breakdown on the utilisation of borrowed funds.

Obi made the demand in a post on X on Monday while decrying significant increase in government borrowing at the end of first Quarter (Q1) which he said reached a staggering N121.86 trillion.

He warned that if the current trend persists, the total amount borrowed could exceed N150 trillion by the end of the year.

“I have consistently maintained that borrowing is not inherently problematic, as long as it is utilized for productive purposes that drive economic growth and development,” Obi said.

“The recent report at the end of the first quarter indicates a significant increase in our government’s borrowing, reaching a staggering N121.86 trillion.

“This rapid accumulation of debt is alarming, and if this borrowing trend continues at the current rate, we can expect the total to surpass N150 trillion by the end of the year.

“The fact that several trillions was borrowed in just three months highlights the urgent need for prudent management of our finances. It is crucial to recognize that the purpose of borrowing is paramount.

“If the borrowed funds are used for consumption or misallocated, we risk worsening our economic situation, perpetuating a cycle of debt and hindering our ability to achieve sustainable economic growth and development.

“On the other hand, if the funds are channelled into productive endeavours such as infrastructure development, education, healthcare, and entrepreneurship, we can expect positive outcomes that benefit our economy and citizens in the long run.

“As I recall, the law governing borrowing is explicit, requiring detailed explanations of the intended use, timing, and other relevant parameters.

“It is essential to ensure that borrowed funds are allocated efficiently and effectively to drive economic growth, create jobs, and improve the standard of living of the majority of our citizens.

“I respectfully request same for accountability for the massive borrowings, which have burdened our nation’s future.

“For the sake of our children and unborn generations, transparency and good governance, a detailed breakdown of how these funds have been utilized and demonstrate their tangible impact on our country’s growth and development should be provided.”

The former Anambra State governor urged policy makers and stakeholders to exercise caution and prudence in managing national debt, ensuring that borrowed funds are utilised for productive purposes.

He said that by doing so “we can promote sustainable economic growth, development, and prosperity for all Nigerians for generations to come.