Amidst rising debt burden, stakeholders at the just-concluded national conference on debt and development have stressed the need to bring debt to a sustainable level to achieve relief.
They argued that Nigeria and other African countries need debt cancellation given that debt remains an instrument for rich developed countries to dominate countries of the south.
The Executive Director of the African Network for Economic and Environment Justice (ANEEJ), David Ugolor, who is also the convener of the conference, expressed worry at the current public debt, put at N87.38 trillion as at the end of March 2023 and the fact that Nigeria’s revenue is now channelled to debt servicing obligations at the peril of basic social services.
He said if urgent and drastic steps are not taken by both the Nigerian government and the international community, the current debt burden would drive more Nigerians into extreme and multidimensional poverty, adding that the debt burden would also impact significantly on the country’s fiscal capability.
Other negative consequences, he said, include inability to fulfill its commitment Sustainable Development Goals as well as the climate actions at the Paris Agreement.