Should the World Bank approve Nigeria’s multi-billion dollar loan request on Tuesday?

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Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

The Executive Board of the World Bank would meet in Washington DC on Tuesday to deliberate on a multi-billion dollar loan the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has requested.

The Nigerian Minister of Finance Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed told reporters in Washington DC last October that the multi-billion dollar mega loan would be used to fund needed infrastructure.

TODAY NEWS AFRICA‘s story on the loan led to the ban of this newspaper by the Minister of Finance and her media team, after she falsely claimed the money had been approved by the World Bank when it had not.

If approved, the multi-billion dollar loan would be repaid many years from now, long after President Muhammadu and his Minister of Finance have left office by 2023 or before.

The deliberation on whether to approve or reject the multi-billion dollar loan comes a week after the United States agreed to return $308 million stolen by Nigeria’s former military Sani Abacha to Nigeria.

State Department spokesperson, Morgan Ortagus, said an agreement between the U.S. government, the Bailiwick of Jersey, and the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for the return of more than $308 million stolen by late General Sani Abacha has been signed.

It also comes just days after the World Bank President Mr. David Malpass ‘indicted’ the African Development Bank headed by a Nigerian man for rushing to push billions into Nigeria and elsewhere without proper assessment.

The assertion that the African Development Bank may be contributing to Africa’s debt distress crisis infuriated Akinwumi Adesina and the bank issued a rare public rebuttal on Thursday against Mr. Malpass.

This publication is seeking answers from Nigerians on whether it would be a good idea to approve the multi-billion dollar loan, especially with infrastructure gap funding in Africa’s most populous country.

For instance, several foreign airlines have been diverting to Ghana this week amid bad weather and lack of proper landing equipment at Nigeria’s largest airport in Lagos. This is happening at the same time many data say the standard of living of Nigerians has continually collapsed under the administration of President Buhari.

This is a developing story that would be updated.

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