Some youth groups across the country have vowed to protest against the Federal Government’s plan to get fresh $5.5bn loan, thus adding to Nigeria’s N19.2tn debt profile.
The groups described the country’s increasing debt profile as worrisome and capable of mortgaging their future and that of coming generations.
Speaking with The Punch on Thursday, the Convener, Plateau Youths G-17 Peace and Progress Forum, Dachung Bagos, feared that by 2018, 70 percent of Nigeria’s budget might be spent on debt servicing and wondered how the country would survive.
Bagos, who also lamented the level of indebtedness by state governments, vowed to champion a protest against further borrowing should the National Assembly approve Buhari’s proposal.
He said, “I can tell you that if the Senate today approves that the President should borrow, honestly, we and other Nigerian youths will embark on a mass protest against persistent borrowing by the current administration, and many human right activists will also support such a mass protest.
“Again, there are clear possibilities that the situation would continue because the monies borrowed are not being channelled into the right sectors for development.”
The President, Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, Shettima Yerima, described the fresh loan request as something “every patriotic Nigerian should be worried about.”
“It is as good as mortgaging the future of this generation,” he said.
Yerima added, “We will resist any attempt by anyone or any group of individuals to mortgage the future of this generation and also compromise the country.
“When they get the loans, there are agreements that come with them, which may never be in the best interest of the country.”