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Senate approves $500m loan for mass metering

Nigeria, others lags in smart meter deployment- report

The Nigerian Senate has approved a $500 million loan request by President Bola Tinubu for the metering of citizens.

The  funds were approved for the  Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) after considering the report of the Committee on local and foreign debt, presented by Haruna Manu, Vice Chairman of the committee.

The $500 million loan is part of the $7.94 billion loan  which President Bola Tinubu sought the Senate’s approval for on November 1st 2023 under the 2022-2024 external borrowing plan. The President also sought approval for €100 million.

However, the Senate approved to borrow $7.4 billion approved during its special plenary on December 30.

Manu, while presenting the report, said the remaining part of the loan ($500 million) for the BPE could not be approved because the agency did not appear before the committee.

Speaking further, he reiterated that the terms and conditions under which the loan was brought will not in any manner compromise the sustainability of Nigeria’s economic growth or hinder the integrity and independence of Nigeria as a sovereign nation.

“The Committee recommends that the Senate do approve the ongoing negotiations of the external borrowing for $500m  for BPE; that the terms of the loan from the funding agency be forwarded to the National Assembly before execution”, the Vice Chairman said.

After considering the report, approved by Jibrin Barau, the deputy Senate President approved the loan request.