A Civil Society Organisation (CSO) has called on Federal Government to account for the $3.4billion Special Drawing Rights (SDT) funds allocated to Nigeria in 2021 was utilitilised.
The Acting Executive Director, Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), Leo Atakpu made the demand in Abuja on Friday at the launching of a Report on the utilisation of Special Drawing Rights
Atakpu said that Nigeria received $3.4billion SDR from the international Monetary Fund (IMF) in August 2021 to cushion the effect of Covid-19
THE WHISTLER gathered that the SDR is an international reserve asset created by the IMF to supplement the official reserves of its member countries. It is a form of financing instrument that a country gets from the IMF as a member country in times of global financial crisis like COVID-19.
The ANEEJ boss said two countries, Chad and Zimbabwe, had spent their SDR to boost agriculture, interrogating how SDR allocated to Nigeria was spent and what was it used for?
According to him, – AFRODAD and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to track SDR funds and raising citizens’ voices to end debt crises in West Africa.
At a panel discussion, Prince Chris Azor, President, International Peace and Civic Responsibility Centre (IPCRC), urged Nigerians to request the government to account for the IMF’s SDR as they have the rights to know.
According to him, it behooves on citizens to demand for accountability and transparency of this SDR funds.
Also speaking, the Executive Director, Keen and Care Initiative (KCI), Josephine Alabi, underscored the need for Nigerians to ask questions on how SDR was spent and how it was used.
Also, Dr Ambrose Igboke, Chairman, Guild of Public Affairs Analyst, said the nation’s leaders do what they do because nobody interrogates what they are doing.
“In developed countries, their citizens hold their leaders accountable by asking right questions while in the developing world, leaders do what they like,” he said.
The Programme Officer, Gender and Development Action, Inyingi Irimagha, said in spite of the SDR funds allocated to Nigeria, SDR did not strengthen the oil sector.
Reports shows that Nigeria received its first SDR in the 70s when there was oil glut, recording a second SDR in 1979 during gulf war, economic meltdown in 2009 and in 2021 due to COVID-19.