Relying on feelers from major sectors of the economy, the Senate Tuesday advised the Minister of Finance and Debt management Office (DMO) to join forces with the rising naira to clear local debts so as to save the ailing but recuperating economy.
Much of the debts are owed local contractors, power sector and supplies of various items to both the states and federal governments.
The was categorical in its request as it urged the Federal Government to appraise its indebtedness to the local contractors; and urge the Federal Government to propose a framework and repayment plan for servicing of these debts.
The lawmakers relied also on the report by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Federal Government’s indebtedness to the local economy to argue that “and its effects in protracting the current economic situation.”
Senator Oluremi Tinubu, lawmaker representing Lagos Central Senatorial District, at the plenary on Tuesday, raised the matter as an issue of urgent national importance which encouraged other members to add their voice in calling on the appropriate authorities to do the needful so as to save jobs.
Other co-sponsorsof the motion included Senators Shehu Sani (Kaduna Central), David Umaru (Niger East), Gbenga Ashafa (Lagos East), Solomon Adeola (Lagos West) and Magnus Abe (Rivers East).
Business Hilights recalls that the DMO had on February 16, 2017, revealed that the total external and domestic debts of the Federal Government, states and the Federal Capital Territory are $57.39bn or N17.36tn.
Out of the bulk, the sum was made up of external debt of $11.41bn (N3.48tn) and domestic debt of $45.98bn (N13.88tn).