NIGERIAN PRESIDENT SEEKS $1 BILLION DOLLARS LOAN TO FIGHT BOKO HARAM.
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan plans to borrow as much as $1 billion from foreign institutions to aid Nigerian security forces in fighting the Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram.According to a report by Nigeria’s Premium Times, the Nigerian president sent a letter to Nigeria’s parliament on Wednesday seeking approval for the loan, stating that the government needed the money to “upgrade the equipment, training and logistics of the armed forces.”
“You are no doubt cognisant of the on-going and serious security challenges which the nation is facing as typified by the Boko-Haram terrorist threat,” Jonathan reportedly said in the request which was read to members of Nigeria’s two legislative houses by their leaders. “For this reason, I seek the concurrence of the National Assembly for external borrowing of not more than $1 billion.”
The Nigerian government earmarks an estimated $6 billion for its military in its annual budget, but a major chunk of these funds are usually diverted by top-ranking government and military officials for personal use. President Jonathan’s government has come under intense criticism home and abroad for its failure to curtail the attacks by the Islamic insurgents. In the last five years, Boko Haram has murdered thousands and abducted hundreds of Nigerians.
President Jonathan did not specify which foreign countries or institutions will be approached for the loan. The Nigerian lawmakers are yet to address the request.