Atiku Calls on Tinubu to Clarify $3.3 Billion NNPCL Loan Deal
Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has called on his rival, Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), to explain the circumstances surrounding a recent $3.3 billion loan taken by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL).
In a statement on Thursday, Atiku, a former vice president, emphasized the need for transparency regarding the loan, which he deemed shrouded in secrecy. He asserted that Nigerians have the right to know the terms of the loan and how the substantial amount of money would be utilized.
“The Nigerian people have a right to know how this loan was obtained, what the terms are, and how the money will be used,” Atiku stated. “This is a huge sum of money, and it is important that the government is transparent about how it will be spent.”
Controversy Surrounding the NNPCL Loan:
The NNPCL loan has become a contentious issue in Nigeria, with critics raising concerns about the government borrowing to fund its budget deficit. The government has defended the loan, emphasizing its necessity for financing critical infrastructure projects.
As of now, Bola Tinubu has not responded to Atiku’s call for an explanation. However, his campaign has asserted that the loan is essential for investment in the oil and gas sector.
“The oil and gas sector is critical to the Nigerian economy,” a spokesperson for the Tinubu campaign stated. “This loan will help us invest in new projects and create jobs.”
Impact on the Election:
The NNPCL loan is anticipated to be a significant topic in the upcoming Nigerian presidential election scheduled for February 2024. Atiku is likely to leverage the loan to critique Tinubu’s economic policies, while Tinubu is expected to defend the loan as a crucial step for the country’s development.
This development adds a layer of economic scrutiny to the political landscape, intensifying the discourse around financial decisions and their implications on Nigeria’s future.