On August 16, 2023, the NNPCL secured a $3.3 billion emergency crude repayment loan to bolster the naira and stabilize the foreign exchange market. The transaction, facilitated by the African Export-Import Bank, aimed to support the Federal Government's monetary and fiscal reforms.
Recently, the Federal Government received $2.25 billion from the $3.3 billion foreign exchange facility provided by the African Export-Import Bank.
In response, Atiku expressed his concerns in a statement released on Thursday, questioning why the only information available to the public regarding this significant deal is sourced solely from the NNPCL.
The former Vice President disclosed that a Special Purpose Vehicle named Project Gazelle Funding Limited is overseeing the deal and is incorporated in the Bahamas.
He said, “SPV is the borrower while the NNPCL is the sponsor, with an agreement to pay with crude oil to the SPV in order to liquidate the loan at an interest rate that is a little over 12 per cent.”
The statement added “What is even more confounding about this deal is why the Federal Government would register a company in the Bahamas, knowing full well the recent scandal of the Paradise Papers that involved that country.
“Curiously also, Nigeria’s current Barrels Produced Daily (BPD) is 1.38 million, and according to the Project Gazelle deal, Nigeria is to supply 90,000 Barrels of its daily production, starting from 2024 till it is up to 164.25 million barrels for the repayment of the loan.
“Now, this is where the details get disturbing because Nigeria’s benchmark for the sale of crude per barrel in 2024 is $77.96. A simple multiplication of that figure by 164.25 will give us a whooping $12bn.
“It is on this note that we are calling on the Federal Government to speak up on this shady deal.
“It is inconceivable that the Federal Government will lead the country to take a loan of $3.3b with an interest rate that is not more than 12 percent, but with estimated repayment amounting to $12bn.
“That is a humongous differential of about $7b between what is in the details of the deal on paper and what indeed is the reality.”