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Kano Elders Petition Chairman Buhari, Others Move To Take Loan From China

Kano Elders Petition Chairman Buhari, Others Move To Take Loan From ChinaKano Elders Petition Chairman Buhari, Others Move To Take Loan From China

The Kano Unity Forum, led by the late National Republican Convention’s former presidential candidate, Alhaji Bashir Tofa, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari, the National Assembly, and the Federal Ministry of Finance to take over N300 trillion loans from China from Governor Ganduje.
The elders who are locally based and specialized groups on Thursday voiced serious reservations against the Governor’s insistence on obtaining loan from China Development Bank to build phase 1 portion of the Light Mono Rail project in the State metropolis.

The petition personally signed by the elder statesman, Alhaji Bashir Othman Tofa, on behalf of the Kano Unity Forum, and made available to newspapers, stated that “except for a few in official circles, no one else knows the terms and conditions of the loan agreement,” adding that “the exact amount borrowed is covered up in secrecy.”

The strongly worded declaration noted:-

“A 1st phase of the project costing over N300 billion, or may be even the N828 billion mentioned by others, coming mostly from a foreign loan is mind-boggling, to say the least. A rethink is not only needed, but necessary.”

Tofa stressed in the signed statement that “based on the study of Kano State ‘s current indebtedness as provided for by Nigeria’s Debt Management Office (DMO), it is exceedingly difficult, almost impossible for Kano State to maintain any indebtedness beyond the state ‘s current liability portfolio.”

The Forum warned that, “It must be remembered that a rail project is never a project to be put in a rush as we remembered that it is neither in the government’s medium-term nor long-term plans.”

“If the Chinese really want to help with cheap loans, they should be asked to support critical sectors such as education , health, agriculture, power, science and technology, infrastructure, industry and water supply,” the Kano stakeholders said, adding that “the Chinese have become world leaders in these aspects of transformative development after all.”

The Group stated:-

“Kano Unity Forum would not give any self-serving politician the latitude to increase poverty and deprivation within the general public through ill-conceived public works.”

The Forum cautioned that, “We shall not be deluded by the attractive idea of good return from the investment. Rail project world over are known as highly capital intensive with a very negligible rate of return on investment. It’s more of a social welfare project, especially in less developed economies.”

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