- Rotimi Amaechi is trying to quell the outrage that has trailed the revelation that Nigeria may lose its sovereignty to China
- There had been reports that Nigeria ceded sovereign right on the assets financed by the loans to China if there was a default in payment
- The transport minister said there is no cause for alarm as Nigeria is already repaying the loans
The minister of transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has disclosed that Nigeria is already repaying China loans.
The minister made this known during a live television programme (Democracy Today) aired on AIT on Saturday, August 1.
According to him, out of the $500m loan the federal government took to build the Abuja-Kaduna rail line, $96m has been paid.
Amaechi said Nigeria is capable of paying all the China loans, Daily Trust reports.
However, he noted that the loan was not taken by the present administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Nigeria is already paying and the $500m was not taking by us, it was taken by President Goodluck Jonathan in his term and that clause was there,” he said.
The minister further explained that it was just a clause put there to protect China money and there was no cause for alarm.
“Anybody that is saying he doesn’t know what a sovereign guarantee or immunity is, too bad for the person, because it simply means in trade that I am not giving you this loan free of charge, just like you go to the bank to collect a loan, the moment you don’t pay they go after your assets you put down.
“That is all about the clause, the Chinese can never come and take over Aso rock and become president or minister,” he said.
While probing Chinese loans to Nigeria, the House of Representatives had discovered that the agreements ceded Nigeria’s sovereign right on the assets financed by the loans to China if there was payment default.
This quickly sparked controversial reactions among Nigerians, with many saying the country is done for.
Amaechi later explained why there is nothing wrong with the federal government ceding Nigeria's sovereignty to China in the signing of a loan deal.
Legit.ng reported that Amaechi told journalists the clause was included in the loan deal with China in order to ensure the recovery of the N5.3bn loan.
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