By Abolaji Adebayo
The National Assembly has granted the request of Ogun State Government to take $350 million World Bank loan for the execution of the State Development Policy Operation as contained in the 2016-2018 Rolling Plan.
The approval was based on the clarification of a report on the loan by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, Sen. Shehu Sani.
Presenting the report at plenary on Thursday, Sani said that the committee observed that the Ogun State DPO budget for the loan had been approved by World Bank in 2016.
He explained that the loan was further captured in the 2016-2018 borrowing plan as approved by the National Assembly.
Sani noted that the committee also observed that the credit facility had an attractive low financing rate of 125 per cent interest, moratorium of five years and a five-year maturity term.
He said, “The facility has already been captured in the 2016-2018 Medium Term Expenditure Framework. It also has low and acceptable loan sustainability level.”
The lawmaker clarified that the DPO loan would help to enhance the capacity of the state government, arguing that the state had also met the various conditions laid by World Bank and as such qualified for the loan.
He added that the state had also put in place institutional framework for transparent and accountable budgetary and financial purpose.
He explained that the projects to be funded by the facility would engender economic growth, increase revenue generation and create employment opportunities.
As Sani said, the committee recommended that the Senate should go ahead and approve the loan as contained in the 2016-2018 external borrowing rolling plan of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over plenary, put the report to voice vote and was adopted by the lawmakers.