The Chinese government has denied claims that it is taking over Nigeria’s sovereignty in respect to the clause in the $500 million loan it granted the country.
The Chinese foreign ministry on Tuesday while reacting to allegations by the House of Representatives that the agreements ceded Nigeria’s sovereign right on the assets financed by the loans to China if there was payment default, said that it had no such plan.
It further added in the statement signed by its spokesman, Zhou Pingjian that it has no interference in African countries’ pursuit of development paths that fit their national conditions; no interference in African countries’ internal affairs and no imposition of the will of China on African countries.
The statement reads thus in full; “We follow a “five-no” approach in our relations with Africa: no interference in African countries’ pursuit of development paths that fit their national conditions; no interference in African countries’ internal affairs; no imposition of our will on African countries; no attachment of political strings to assistance to Africa; and no seeking of selfish political gains in investment and financing cooperation with Africa.
The ministry added that “China is committed to enhancing investment and financial cooperation with African countries based on their needs to help them improve infrastructure and extradite socioeconomic development. By funding infrastructure and other areas that lag behind for short of money, we have helped the relevant countries break bottlenecks, enhance their capacity for independent development, realize social and economic sustainable development, and improve people’s livelihood. Such cooperation has delivered tangible benefits to African countries and peoples.
“In the process, China always gives full consideration to debt sustainability and seeks mutually-acceptable proposals through equal and friendly consultations. That is the fundamental reason behind the enormous popularity of China-Africa cooperation in Africa,” it added.
This came after the federal government was on Monday threatened with a legal action if it failed to immediately publish the terms and conditions of all loans it has taken so far.
The threat was contained in a statement issued by the Nigeria Labour Congress, the Trade Union Congress and 80 other organisations, under the aegis of the Alliance for Surviving COVID-19 and Beyond (ASCAB).
The statement was signed by its Chairman, Mr Femi Falana, (SAN); the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba and his TUC counterpart, Quadri Olaleye, who are both co-chairmen, threatening a legal action against the government if it failed to publish details of the loans.
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