An All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain Senator Adesoji Akanbi has raised the alarm over approval of N100 billion prosperity bond by the Oyo Executive Council to facilitate execution of priority projects for economic development in the state.
He described the decision as ill-informed and undesirable.
Akanbi, in a statement, said: “A bond, simply put, is a fiscal income made by an investor to a borrower.
“Given that there is no state that will not need borrowing to get solvent, the pertinent question remains that, at what volume can the Oyo state government afford to borrow?
“Can we as a state continue to borrow money when the economy is depleting? This causes for a disquiet concern for all and sundry.”
He added: “It is a swings and roundabouts thing. If we are to service the bond to 20 – 25% of our hard-earned IGR, it behooves us to boost our IGR significantly.
“Can the state earning below N100 billion take the said amount as a loan at this crucial moment?
“We are quick to draw comparison between Oyo state and other states without stating the realities of our IGR status.
“Lagos has about N399 billion in internally generated revenue, followed closely by Ogun state, which has recently grown its IGR by 14.1% totaling up to N70.9 billion.
“These two states are home and dry for any loan. Government needs to be more open and transparent in its deeds.
“Bond is good for developmental purpose if the terms and conditions attached are to be adequately met without shifting the burden on the hapless masses.”
He said rather than take bond, the state should increase its IGR.
“I worked with the late Lam Adesina as an economic advisor during his administration.
“We were just three then and we bought large quantities of shares to boost our IGR, which of course was frittered away by successive administrations.
“Lam Adesina couldn’t touch bonds with a long pole. It should also be noted that Oyo state is not a rich state and we all feed from the crumbs coming from the government. Let us not add more yokes.”