When Budget Minister Goofed On Nigeria’s Debt Profile
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Some participants at the ongoing Nigerian Economic Summit (NES) in Abuja were surprised on Monday when the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udoma Udo Udoma, could not state categorically what Nigeria’s debt profile was.
His response to a question asked by one of the moderators at the occasion, Zain Asher of CNN, provoked loud murmurs from the audience, who were apparently shocked.
Asher had requested the Minister to say what Nigeria’s debt profile was, but Mr Udoma could not provide an accurate answer.
“How much is Nigeria’s total debt?” the CNN anchor asked the Minister.
“I can’t tell you the exact figure. I will have to get back to you on that,” Mr Udoma responsed to the amazement of Asher and the audience.
“But you are the Minister of Budget,” Asher charged.
Responding, Mr Udoma explained that several committees were saddled with the responsibility of compiling Nigeria’s debt and as such, he could not give a precise figure at the event.