Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, said the state was forced to take a World Bank Development loan because the Peoples Democratic Party-led Federal Government in 16 years looted the nation’s treasury and pauperized the states.
He, however, said it was a good thing that President Muhammadu Buhari came at the right time to stop the liquidation of the country.
The World Bank had approved a $225 million loan for Edo State Government in 2012, to be implemented in three tranches of $75 million per annum.
The first tranche of the loan was approved by the National Assembly in the 2012-2014 Federal Government External Rolling Borrowing Plan, while the second tranche was approved by the National Assembly last week.
Speaking with reporters at the Government House on Monday, Oshiomhole said, “If the PDP did not steal the money, we would not need to borrow. What we lost from the NLNG under the PDP led Federal Government was about $11.6 billion. Edo State’s share of that money was more than N30 billion. If you realise that from every one billion dollars, we get more than N2.7 billion. So if PDP did not steal and bleed the economy dry, our legitimate revenue stolen by the past PDP government and its men is more than that.
“PDP is simply not in a position to blame the victims of their own looting which is unprecedented in the history of the country. My hope is that they would be brought to justice.
“You heard President Buhari saying last week that after they finished looting the treasury, they even borrowed to loot. You heard the President say that they took a loan from China and they already had taken $600 million from the loan. By now if they were still there, there would have finished the rest.
“In the South-South zone, look at the debt profile, Edo is the least borrowed. The only major loan we have taken since I assumed office was a N25 billion bond out of which we have paid over N20 billion because we are paying N530 million every month.
“As we speak, we have only about N5 billion left of that loan which will be liquidated before the end of this tenure. You heard of bailout, find out what PDP states are borrowing under the bailout plan, not for development but to pay salaries. But Edo State Government is up-to-date with salaries without bail out. You need to interrogate facts and not report these people as if they are responsible people because when you do that, people don’t know the difference between mischief makers and responsible people.
“PDP should simply shut up because they destroyed everything. Carry out your own investigations. You read in the papers how much our neighboring states are borrowing. You heard of N20billion, N30 billion under two months. To do what, to settle the invisibles? You hear them talking about N14.5 billion. We are not borrowing to pay salaries, we are able to do that in spite of the massive looting by the PDP. I appeal to the media because you are victims and you must interrogate these thieves when they break the highway rules and want to divert you. When you ask questions, they say you want to witch hunt. Why won’t you witch hunt when the witches are killing people in the village?”