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Former presidential candidate for the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has raised concerns over the Nigerian government’s borrowing strategies, describing them as unproductive. Obi expressed his views in a statement shared via his verified social media handle on Tuesday.

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According to Obi, Nigeria’s public debt has continued to rise without significant positive impact on the country’s economy. He particularly highlighted the substantial debt accumulated during the previous administration, including the controversial N30 trillion ways and means borrowing from the central bank.

Obi lamented the lack of visible investment or value addition resulting from the mounting debt burden, emphasizing the need for accountability and transparency in government spending.

The former governor of Anambra State voiced his worries in response to the recent release of Nigeria’s debt profile by the Debt Management Office (DMO). The DMO report revealed that Nigeria’s public debt had surged by 10 percent, reaching N97.3 trillion by the end of 2023. This debt comprises both domestic debt (N59.12 trillion) and external debt (N38.22 trillion).

Highlighting the staggering amount spent on servicing the country’s debts, which totaled N10 trillion in 2023, Obi criticized these expenditures as “unproductive debts.” He pointed out that the funds allocated to debt servicing far exceeded the combined budgetary allocations for critical sectors such as defence, education, health, and infrastructure.

In light of these concerns, Obi called on the government to exercise restraint in its borrowing activities and conduct a thorough assessment of previous loans’ utilization. He stressed the importance of redirecting resources towards essential sectors to mitigate the escalating debt profile and ensure sustainable economic growth.

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