Enugu govt’s N15b loan and social media mischief makers

 Enugu govt’s N15b loan and social media mischief makers

By Charly Onah

As mischief makers and hired social media urchins, working for desperate politicians ahead of 2023 elections in Enugu try to misinform or hoodwink people that the recent approved N15b loan by the Enugu State House of Assembly for Enugu State Government is to mortgage the future of the state, findings have since revealed that the loan is being taken by all the state governments across the country.

1) It would be recalled that in 2015 the Federal Government gave state governments across the country bailout funds to enable them stay afloat financially, following the economic recession that hit the country, due to the crash in the price of crude, which led to massive loss of revenue by governments at all levels.

At a point, the Federal Government started deducting the bailout funds repayment from the state governments’monthly allocations at the source. This development took a heavy toll on some state governments as they struggle to pay salaries and meet up with their other financial obligations.

This is unlike Enugu state government that has been paying salaries promptly and regularly, executing capital projects and still meeting up with her other financial obligations due to Governor Ugwuanyi’s prudent and transparent management of the state resources. That does not mean that the state does not need more funds to carry out her financial obligations it needs.

2) In order to ameliorate the financial challenges faced by state governments across the country, following the bailout fund deductions and to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy and people of the states, the Federal Government arranged and facilitated another loan for all the states.

3) The loan has a moratorium of 2 years and repayment period of 30 years. It is a single digit interest loan.

4) While most state governments have taken their own, Enugu is among the last states that applied for it after it was approved by the Enugu State House of Assembly. It is public knowledge that Ugwuanyi’s government inherited N68, 855, 130, 073 from the successive governments in the state.

Most of these loans were taken when there was financial fluidity in the system, unlike since Ugwuanyi’s government assumed office and has been battling financial challenges due to poor economy and effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

These facts are sacred and can be verified from Debt Management Office and Federal Government’s relevant agencies. There is nothing secret or bad about the loan. The truth is that the loan is not peculiar to Enugu State as being erroneously, ignorantly and mischievously peddled on social media platforms by paid agents and enemies of the state.

5) It is an axiomatic fact that the N15b loan is the first Ugwuanyi’s administration is taking since it assumed office amidst obvious, daunting and prevailing financial cum economic challenges.

It is known that Ugwuanyi’s administration has not been on borrowing spree like other state governments. Governor Ugwuanyi has judiciously and fiscally managed the lean financial resources of the state to the surprise and commendations of many, especially those who know and understand the state of the economy when he came into office and how he has been able to keep the state afloat financially without borrowing until now.

6) If other states have taken and still taking the loan, there is nothing wrong in Enugu state government taking it. After all, the Federal Government will not stop deducting the bailout fund given to Enugu state in 2015 from their monthly allocation if the state government refuses to take the loan like their counterparts across the country. Besides, Enugu State needs the loan to enable the government complete ongoing capital projects across the length and breadth of the state and initiate new ones. The loan repayment period is okay and the digit is favourable.

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