Wednesday, November 3, 2021

OPINION: Governor El-rufai's Debt Bondage, By Nasiru Jagaba

Allegedly, Governor Elrufai has applied for the approval of another foreign loan of $150 million. The Minister of Finance Zainab Ahmed included the loan request in the new borrowing plan sent to the NASS now awaiting approval. 
When this loan is approved,kaduna will become the most indebted state in the country.
Our worries are:

1. We don't have details on how he spent the previous loan facilities he obtained. The citizens are not carried along when it comes to policy formulation and policy implementation. He tells the world that he practices button-up development approach (participatory development) but what we see in practice is top-down approach. Authoritatively, he  formulates and implements whatever comes to mind without Consulting or bring to bear the main stakeholders upon development planning. This is obvious with the 2022 budget  presented to Kaduna state House of Assembly without holding a single town hall meeting that enables the citizens to partake in the decisions that affect them.

2. The cost of inaction on human capital development is going up, despite the mounting evidence that unless the state strengthens her human capital, she cannot achieve sustained, inclusive economic growth and a preferred workforce that will service the loans. The state is happily destroying economic activities rather than creating jobs and small scale businesses that will help generate internal revenue that will ease the outrageous debt bondage.


3. The agreement or conditions governing these loans and how the  loans are spent  are covered-up in secrecy.
No one knows how much a kilometre of road or  a bridge is contracted. On one knows the agreement between the Governor and shoprite. No one has the details of the privatised markets.

4. The infrastructural development is concentrated on a  preferred people and choice location, despite the fact that the burden and  trajectories of these loans are upon the shoulders of the citizens of Kaduna state irrespective of religion, tribe or senatorial Districts.

5. Before embarking on a project, the state   doesn't care to have the social-anthropological background or knowledge of the "target group"-the poor, those with an income below the absolute or relative threshold of poverty, the rich, and even the victims of the projects. Thereby crippled the citizens' businesses, inflict pains on people which in turn crushed the economy of the state.

Lastly, no one can confidently say that these loans are judicially spent looking at the imported and intelligent fraudsters brought into the state to help in carrying out. untraceable deals.

Kaduna state would be so lucky if they bad guys siphoned 60% and invested 40% of the loans in the state. Unfortunately, no one is asking questions, time will come that our children and grandchildren get to a condition similar to slavery where people are unable to control their lives or their work due to unpaid debts.

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