Amid outrage over $500 million in loans collected by the Federal government from China, the Asian country’s government has said there is no plan to seize Nigeria’s sovereign right in the event of a default on payments.
It should be recalled that transport Minister Rotimi Amaechi, in a conversation with reporters, explained why there is nothing wrong with the Federal government ceding the sovereignty of Nigeria to China when signing a loan agreement.
Amaechi’s position came after the House of representatives found that agreements between the country and China cede Nigeria’s sovereign right to assets financed by loans if there is a default on payments.
Speaking live on the AIT TV program on Saturday, August 1, the transport Minister later said that Nigeria was already repaying Chinese loans. Of the $500 million loan that the Federal government took out for the construction of the Abuja-Kaduna railway line, $96 million was paid, he said, adding that the loan would be paid over twenty years.
Amid fears that Nigeria’s sovereignty as an independent state could be threatened, the Chinese government said in a statement that there was no plan to take over the country.
China has stated that it is committed only to maintaining mutual relations with African countries, stating: “We have a five-no approach in our relations with Africa.
“No interference in the desire of African countries to pursue a path of development that meets their national conditions; no interference in the internal Affairs of African countries; no imposition of our will on African countries; no tying political strings to aid Africa; and no seeking selfish political gains in investment and financial cooperation with Africa,” part of the statement reads.
Meanwhile, it is reported that Senator Shehu Sani said that there are still many questions for defense that transport Minister Amaechi is putting forward, as the conversation continues to be widely delayed up to the payment of $500 million in Chinese loans.
Sani, a former Senator representing Central Kaduna, raised an eyebrow at the logic of paying off loans for twenty years.
The former lawmaker said that by 2040, when Nigeria may have completed the payment, many infrastructures built with loans could become worthless.