These are these are not the best of times for Nigerians and the nation’s economy.
Every day, it is becoming clear that the people at the hem of affairs are on a trial and error learning curve which is adopted in modern day gambling in order to tackle the economic challenges that is facing the country. The latest in the cant and recant style is the news that even the minister of Finance does not know what the 2.2 Trillion NAIRA the government borrowed was used for . Below is an excerpt from The Punch newspaper on this.
N2.2tn domestic borrowing used to fund budget —Minister
But the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, while responding to enquiries from one of our correspondents, justified the increase in the debts.
The minister was asked what the money was spent on. She simply said, “I guess it would have been used to fund the budget and whatever government is spending money on.”
She said the government would continue to scale up spending in the area of infrastructure such as road, power and railway among others.
Invest borrowed funds in productive ventures, NLC tells FG
The Nigeria Labour Congress urged the Federal Government to utilise the borrowed funds to revamp the economy.
The General Secretary of the NLC, Dr. Peter Ozo-Eson, in an interview with Saturday PUNCH, said that while it was not bad to borrow to stimulate the economy during a period of recession, it was important that the money was put to productive use.
He advised that such funds should be committed to the creation of employment opportunities.
Ozo-Eson stated, “Well, with the economy in recession, we have all agreed from the beginning, we need a stimulus to turn the economy around. This is why the 2016 budget is hugely a deficit budget. That implies that you need to borrow in order to create that stimulus. It is the use to which we put what is borrowed that is important.
“If we plough it heavily into infrastructure and in creating employment, in the long run and in the medium- term, it will help to revamp the economy and then restore balance to fiscal operations. So we do not think that borrowing is bad, particularly in the period in which we have to stimulate the economy.”