Nasarawa state has raised a N10 billion bond to finance infrastructure development projects in the state, Governor of the state, Alhaji Umaru Tanko Almakura, has disclosed.
Almakura, who led other members of the state’s executive council to sign the first lot of N5 billion bond agreement in Abuja, explained that the second lot of N5 billion would be sealed later in the year.
The governor also said his administration had paid back N37 billion debt incurred by past administrations, adding that the N10 billion bond was necessary, following the state’s low financial capacity.
“Having paid outstanding debts on our head incurred over the years by past administration totalling up to about N37 billion, we feel the amount of resources at our disposal would not be enough to facilitate the execution of the project needed to provide for all, that was why we had to seek for the bond,” he said.
The governor added that Nasarawa state, as one of the newest states created in 1996, is bedevilled with teething problems, especially in the area of infrastructure. He however said the new bond would address infrastructure deficit at the same time boost commercial activities in the state.
“We are a new state, and we have a lot of challenges that all states may probably not have. Our greatest challenge as a state is that of infrastructure. As a new state, some of the foundations that we are supposed to have for effective development are infrastructures, and government has shied away from provision of such infrastructures because of the capital intensive nature of such projects.”
“We intend to use this bond, specifically to provide infrastructures where there are none and to the dilapidated once, particularly as it relates to educational infrastructure”, he added.
“We intend to use this bond for comprehensive market in three of the state’s urban areas, Lafia, Akwanga and Keffi. The government will also use part of the money to expand the Karu international market, which is one of the largest markets in northern Nigeria,” he said.