Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of a Federal High Court in Abuja has fixed July 1, 2020, to hear a suit by a political party, Action Peoples Party (APP) seeking to set aside the approval for any external loan borrowing by the National Assembly.
The Federal Government of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari, the Attorney-General of the Federation and the Minister of Finance are mentioned as the 1st to 5th defendants in the suit.
In the suit numbered, FHC/ABJ/CS/365/2020, the plaintiff prayed the court for an order setting aside and or nullifying the request for external loan/borrowing made by the President for fundamental failure to specify the cost-benefits, the economic and social benefits to which the borrowing is intended to be applied, viability/feasibility test on the sustainability of the borrowing and project finance, loan repayment projections as well as for being lopsided and in breach of federal character.
In the affidavit in support of the originating summons, deposed to by Uchenna Nnadi, the Deputy National Chairman of the party, the plaintiff said that by a letter sent to the National Assembly, the President requested the approval of the sum of $22.7 billion.
He said the said borrowing was purportedly tied to infrastructure and other projects by the President.
According to him, a similar request by the President three years ago was flatly rejected by the National Assembly as it did not meet the mandatory detailing required for the parliamentary debate.
When the case came up on Friday, counsel to the plaintiff, begged the court to adjourn the case to July 1, 2020, to enable him effect service on the defendants.
According to him, the COVID 19 pandemic made it impossible for him to effect service on the defendants.
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