Infrastructure Development: Governor Soludo gets approval for N100bn loan
Tochukwu Ifejika and MaryRose Onuigbo, Awka
Governor Charles Soludo’s request to access loan facilities worth N100 billion from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), for infrastructure development, has been approved by the Anambra State House Of Assembly.
The approval followed the consideration and adoption of the report of the House Committee on Public Accounts during plenary on Thursday in Awka.
On July 5, 2022,Soludo, wrote to the State Assembly, seeking approval to secure a N100 billion Global Limit Multiple Term Loan Facility from CBN, for the construction and refurbishment of key infrastructure in the state.
Presenting the report, Mr Somto Udeze, representing Ogbaru Constituency ll and Chairman of the committee said that the Commissioners for Finance and Economic Planning and Budget were invited for interaction on the terms of the loan facilities.
According to Udeze, “the discussion was to ascertain the terms of the loan, monthly deductions, duration of the loan, the interest rate, project specifications and the current debt profile of the state.”
He said that the Committee was satisfied with the responses provided by the commissioners.
“We observed that the N100 billion loan was strictly for the construction of roads, bridges and flyovers across the state.
“It was also observed that the current debt profile of the state at about N107 billion, can still accommodate more of such loans considering the expected outcome and impact on the state residents.
“However, we recommended that the Commissioners should provide the list of the proposed project descriptions and expected cost of each project for ease of oversight function subsequently; and that was done.
“That the loan should be secured at single-digit interest rate and be used for feasible infrastructure development alone.
“We also recommend the need for increased internally generated revenue to minimise borrowing to fund Infrastructure development in the state,” he said.
However, some lawmakers lamented that not all the 30 constituencies in the state were captured in the proposed infrastructure upgrade.
The Speaker of the House, Mr Uche Okafor commended the committee for the thorough scrutiny of the loan request and conducted a voice vote for the adoption of the report.
The House granted the governor’s request in a unanimous resolution.
The house also at plenary, passed a bill to establish the system of Criminal Justice Administration in Anambra and to provide for related matters.
The Bill titled, ‘Administration of Criminal Justice Bill 2022, Repeal and Re-enactment,’ was read for the third time and subsequently passed during plenary.
The Speaker directed the Acting Clerk, Mrs Esther Anetoh to send a clean copy of the Bill to the State Governor for endorsement.