Sunday, 8 March 2015

News Release: Revisiting Criminal Borrowings & Governance Deficiencies In Nigeria's Geopolitical Zones(Part Two)



In the first part of this publication, dated 7th March 2015, Nigerians and watchers of the country’s socio-political events were led into the state of criminal borrowings and governance deficiencies in the country’s geopolitical zones leading to heavy defeat of the fundamental essence of public governance (social services provision and delivery) resulting in the country’s geopolitical zones being turned into a zoo of human habitation with the looters and their cronies making themselves hegemonic ruling animals over others.

This publication is generally intended by the leadership of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law to bring to the fore the fundamental determinants in the 2015 polls so as to open the eyes of the electorates and expose the ruination of democratic governance in Nigeria’s geopolitical zones by the present crop of politicians particularly the State Governors; for the grand purpose of guiding the electorates to make conscientious electoral choice during the referenced polls based on the state of social affairs in their States. It is also intended to demystify some un-repentant political crooks that use media and compromised CSOs to canonize themselves and their political puppets by purporting change or transformation.

The political crooks under reference, who continuously pontificate and canonize themselves; did not worth N5M cash and properties other than their ancestral houses before they became elective or appointive public office holders; but today, they own TV, Radio and Newspaper plazas and other multi billion naira properties within and outside Nigeria. These they illicitly acquired using monies they borrowed criminally using phony excuses and public projects. They buy over hitherto active and outspoken CSOs and lawyers and use them to undermine the course of justice administration for the purpose of escaping its wrath. They are majorly concentrated in the Southwest zone. Remnants are also found in the South-south zone.

Owing to recent grave allegations of criminal enrichment leveled against present and past top public office holders in the country, we have been prompted to investigate and expose the sorry state of finances of all the 36 States and the FCT particularly as it concerns criminal borrowings.  The fundamental part of our findings is that the referenced huge loans were borrowed for the purposes of criminal diversion, misappropriation including legitimate and illegitimate public office entitlements and white elephant projects. In Lagos State, for instance, hundreds of millions of dollars were borrowed to resuscitate 268 public schools, but in Anambra State, over one thousand public and missionary schools were resuscitated under Mr. Peter Obi administration without borrowing a dime internally and externally.

We also discovered that most of the loans borrowed were not capable of repaying themselves; despite their spiral interest rates. The referenced loans were also dominated by stomach economic purposes. That is to say they were borrowed to offset public and civil service wage arrears as well as for the purpose of criminal diversions using phony projects or project simulations.

Skyrocketed cost of governance is a common place in most of the States, leading to serial borrowing of loans to defray them. We also found that monthly Security votes of the Governors constitute a chunk of high cost of governance.

In Anambra State, for instance, monthly security votes recorded spiral increases in 2014; from N420M a month (5B yearly) in March 2014 to N625M in April/May 2014; and to about N850M in the last quarter of 2014 or about N10B yearly. In Abia State, around N10B is spent annually on security votes. Similar situations apply in other States across the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria. The reported N10B annual security votes of Anambra State alone constitute about 20% of the State’s annual block federal allocations.

In all, the States of Lagos, Ogun, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Kano, Kaduna, Anambra, the FCT and to an extent; Abia, Imo and Borno, ought not to borrow a dime for the purpose of public governance. This is because of their bountiful internally generated revenue and oil proceeds’ potentials and realizations. Also resorting to serial borrowings is a barefaced indication of deficit integrity of the governing authorities in the affected States; making it impossible for them to source for social development funds externally through development partners and donor agencies. The Obi’s administration in Anambra State, for instance,  is one of the very few States that successfully applied non loan massive external resources mobilization policy.

Geopolitical/State-By-State Breakdown Of Sub-national Local & External Debts:
Southwest Zone:
External Debts                             Local Debts                                               Total In Naira
Lagos-$1, 169.7B (N222.36B)                  N278.86B                                                  N501.22B
Ogun-$109.1M (N20.1B)                          N58.38B                                                    N78.48B
Oyo-$72.3M (N13.6B)                               N19.1B                                                      N32.7B
Osun-$74.1M (N14.6B)                             N41.4B                                                      N56B
Ondo-$52.6M (N9.9B)                              N30.88B                                                    N40.78B
Ekiti-$46.4M (N8.7B)                                N22.37B                                                    N31.07B
Total=$1, 522.2B (N289.2B)                    N451.01B                                                  N740.26B
(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)

South-south Zone:
          External Debts                                  Local Debts                                              Total In Naira
  Rivers-$44.7M (N8.5B)                           N129.54B                                                  N138.04B
  A.Ibom-$58.8M (N11.2B)                       N125.03B                                                 N136.23B
  C. River-$141.4M (N26.7B)                    N116.06B                                                 N142.76B
  Bayelsa-&34.8M (N6.6B)                       N122.8 (est.)                                            N128.4B
Delta-$24.2M (N4.5B)                                N102.1B                                              N106.6B
Edo-$123.1M (N23.7B)                              N48.19B                                              N71.89B
Total=$427.0M (N81.2B)                          N527.93B                                            N717.95B
(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)
Southeast Zone:
                  External Debts                        Internal Debts                                      Total In Naira
Anambra-$45.1M (N8.5B)                      N3.025B                                                N8.525B
Abia-$33.7M (N6.3B)                              N31.73B                                                 N38.03B
Imo-$53.0M (N10.7B)                            N12.66B                                                  N23.36B
Enugu-$68.9M (N13.1B)                       N12.06B                                                   N25.16B
Ebonyi-$45.4M (N8.6B)                        N13.23B                                                   N21.83
Total=$246.1M (N47.5B)                     N72.72B                                                   N116.92B
(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)
Northwest Zone:
                    External Debts               Internal Debts                                           Total In Naira  
Kaduna-$234.4M (N44.6B)             N9.83B                                                         N54.43B
Kano-$57.9M (N11.3B)                   N32.20B                                                       N43.50B
Katsina-$78.9M (N14.8B)               N269M                                                         N15.60B
Jigawa-$35.7M (N6.80B)                N1.61B                                                         N8.41B
Kebbi-$43.7M (N8.3B)                    N857M                                                         N9.15B
Sokoto-$44.8M (N8.5B)                 N5.73B                                                          N14.23B
Zamfara-$33.5M (N6.6B)              N28.21B                                                        N34.81B
Total=$532.7M (N100.9B)            N78.72B                                                        N180.16B

(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)

Northeast Zone:
                  External Debts                 Internal Debts                                       Total In Naira
Borno-$23.0M (N4.4B)                    N23.94B                                                  N28.34B
Adamawa-$46.7M (N9.0B)             N15.97B                                                  N24.97B
Taraba-$22.7M (N4.3B)                   N13.88B                                                  N18.18B
Bauchi-$87.5M (N16.5B)                N16.82B                                                   N33.32B
Gombe-$39.5M (N7.5B)                 N27.99B                                                   N35.49B
Yobe-$31.2M (N5.9B)                    N1.22B                                                      N7.022B
Total=$250.6M (N47.5B)              N99.74B                                                    N147.32B

(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)

North-Central Zone:
              External Debts                  Internal Debts                                       Total In Naira
Kwara-$52.7M (N10.5B)              N22.41B                                                  N32.91B
Nasarawa-$49.9M (N9.4B)          N28.84B                                                 N38.24B
Niger-$44.7M (N8.5B)                  N24.73B                                                 N33.23B
Kogi-$35.7M (N6.9B)                    N7.10B                                                   N14.009B
Plateau-$30.9M (N5.9B)             N56.41B                                                 N62.31B
Benue-$33M (N6.3B)                   N24.98B                                                 N31.28B
Total=$246.9M (N47.0B)            N160.05B                                               N212.007B

(Note: In calculating the States referenced external sub-national debts, N190.00 per USD exchange was used)

Federal Capital Territory (FCT):
External Debts=$36.6M (N7B), Internal Debts= N84.32B
Total In Naira=N91.32B

Summarized Findings:
1.  Total States Sub-national External Debts for South= $2, 195B (N417.6B)
2. Total States Sub-national External Debts for North including the FCT=$1,066B (N202B)
3. Total States Sub-national External Debts for the country=$3, 265B
4. Total States Sub-national Local Debts for the South=N1, 044 trillion
5. Total States Sub-national Local Debts for the North including the FCT=N423.3B
6.  Total States Sub-national Local Debts for the country=N1, 467.9 trillion
7.  Total States Sub-national Local Debts updated by DMO covering 2014 but yet to be added on State-by-State basis=N1, 707 trillion
8. Total States Sub-national Local Debts borrowed in 2014 fiscal year captured by the DMO=N239.5B
9. Total States Sub-national Local and External Debts for the South=N1, 575 trillion
10.Total States Sub-national Local and External Debts for the North including the FCT=N630.82B
11. Grand Total of the States and the FCT’s Local and External Debts in Naira= N2, 205. 9 trillion
12. Lagos State is the most indebted State in Nigeria owing more than Northwest and North-central zones put together
13.The Southwest is the most indebted Zone in Nigeria with N740. 26B, followed by the South-south Zone with N717.95B.

Source: Debts Management Office (DMO) of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 2015

Observation: It is observed that the DMO records in the area of the States sub-national local debts did not include the 2014 fiscal year or monies borrowed locally by the 36 States and the FCT in 2014 fiscal year. That is to say that the DMO’s last update as represented above is that of December 31st 2013. But in the area of the States sub-national external debts, the DMO’s update covers that of the 2014 fiscal year.

Also while the DMO’s records as per the States’ external debts are reasonably authentic, the contrary is reasonably the case in the area of the States’ internal debts. Records transmitted to the DMO by the affected States have been found to be likely dubious and manipulated. It is likely there are hundreds of billions of naira worth of hidden and criminal borrowings across several States in the country’s six geopolitical zones.

Signed:

Emeka Umeagbalasi, B.Sc. (Hons) Criminology & Security Studies
Board Chairman, International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law
+2348174090052(office)

Uzochukwu Oguejiofor, Esq., Head, Campaign & Publicity Department

Chiugo Onwuatuegwu, Esq., Head, Democracy & Good Governance Program

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