THE Director, African Centre for Peace and Development, Senator Shehu Sani, on Friday said that the Eighth National Assembly rejected the $30 billion loan requested by President Muhammadu Buhari under the external borrowing plan because it did not want the country to sink into a “perpetual debt trap.”
Sani who was the Chairman, Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debt in the 8th Senate, disclosed this in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja.
He insisted that with the current upswing in borrowings, Nigerians will one day wake up to find that they are now tenants in their own houses.
He said the National Assembly did not want the country to be recolonised by creditor banks.
Sani, who represented Kaduna Central in the Eight Senate, said: “We turned down the FG loan request for $30 billion to save Nigeria from sinking into the dark gully of a perpetual debt trap.
“We don’t want our country to be recolonised by creditor banks.
“Our external debt in 2015 was $10.32 billion and it escalated to $22.08 in the second quarter this year, which is 114 per cent. If we had approved that loan request, our external debt could have catapulted to over $52 billion, and that is not sustainable.
“With the current escalation of borrowing, we will be walking into debt slavery and move from landlords to tenants in our country. They will always tell you that even America is borrowing and I don’t know how rational is it to keep on borrowing because another country is borrowing.
“If we keep listening to bankers and contractors, we will keep borrowing and burying ourselves and leave behind for our children a legacy of debt burden.
“Loans are not charities. Most of those encouraging more borrowing are parasitic consultants, commission agents, rent seeking fronts and contractors. We must be cautious.”