Buhari right to borrow $800m – Ex-finance commissioner, Harrison

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By Daniel Chibuike

A former Commissioner for Finance in Abia State, Mr Richard Harrison has backed President Mohamadu Buhari’s administration’s request to borrow $800 million for a social investment program for poor and vulnerable Nigerians.

The former Commissioner stated this in a statement he made available to journalists in Umuahia.

Harrison downplayed negative public reaction that trailed the loan request by the outgoing President.

He maintained that an outgoing administration could still borrow money for sustenance of good projects and other popular programs so long as due process was applied in obtaining and utilization of such funds.

Harrison also faulted the alarm credited to the Director-General, Budget Office of the Federation, Mr Ben Akabueze where he stated that Nigeria was fast exceeding its limited borrowing space because of its low GDP to Debt ratio.

He stressed that telling an outgoing administration not to borrow money for a project is like stopping a moving train from a fast journey.

According to him, “The President can borrow to meet existing obligations. Existing debt can be restructured, provided due process is followed.

“Government is like a train travelling from Port Harcourt to Lagos through Kaduna.

“You cannot stop the journey because another driver is taking over at the next stop or station.

“Drivers come and go but the journey continues.”

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