It was a revelation on Wednesday, when the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Senator Bala Mohammed disclosed that the FCT administration's debts incurred over the years are now in the region of N420 billion.
The minister who briefed State House correspondents after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan however, hastened to add that the debts have accrued over the last 20 years.
According to him, part of the plan to pay up the debts was to float a bond, which he said Council has approved. His words, "in terms of indebtedness, over the years, not just now, but over 20 years now, we have a debt of N420 billion.
"And I have craved the indulgence of the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and she has agreed and Council has noted our recommendation to float an FCT development fund, that we can float bond after we have established a sound legal framework with the establishment of FCT revenue Board, so that we can pay our debts and do new projects," he said.
Senator Mohammed also spoke about the plan to find alternative funding especially from bilateral and multi-lateral organizations. He decried the influx of people into the capital city that was originally meant for one million people but now accommodating about five million without corresponding infrastructure expansion.
He spoke further, "we have developed a robust and credible business plan, a cash flow that will enable us on a broader spectrum and make sure that we service our obligations minimally so that we can enforce integrity and confidence.
"We are heavily indebted. Our responsibilities are many and multi-dimensional and that is why we are trying to leverage on the private sector do some private public partnership projects and programmes. We have informed Council that we have accessed private sector investment to the tune of 4.6billion dollars since we came on board.
"They are visible, like the World Trade Center that is 75 percent nearing completion, Abuja Industrial Park, 8 district for the land swap to develop estate and use the land to pay them off. That would have saved about 350billion Naira which would be spent through the normal budgetary allocation.
"Also, we have informed Council that we have a concession template for the existing corridor such as the Airport road and the outer express way, requiring about 49billion Naira to complete so that at the end of the day, we will toll them and they would have been self sustaining, rather than waiting for the federal government to provide money which would shift the goal post for the completion of the project".
The minister also said his administration has concluded plans to establish waste to power plant with a view to ensuring that wastes generated in the city are properly managed.
Apart from the FCT, the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, said the Minister of Labour, Emeka Wogu, also briefed FEC on the activities of his ministry in 2012, disclosing that About 195,534 new jobs have been created.