The Management of Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) says 350 debtors owe it N3.6 trillion, an amount higher than the N3.12 trillion set aside this year by the Federal Government for debt servicing.
It noted that the N3.6 trillion, if recovered, would be enough to complete the revival of the moribund Ajaokuta Steel Company in Kogi State, capitalise over 2 million Micro-businesses with N2 million each or 200,000 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with N20 million per SME.
AMCON added that by so doing over 10 million jobs could be created in the country, thereby taking unemployed youths off the streets.
The Group Head of AMCON Enforcement, Mr Joshua Ikioda, disclosed this at two-day training for Federal High Court Legal Assistants and Court Registrars in Abuja at the weekend.
Mr Joshua Ikioda who did not name any of the debtors, said they represent 80 percent of the N4.4 trillion of the total outstanding debt to the corporation.
He called on agencies of the Federal Government and stakeholders to join AMCON’s debt recovery efforts to guide against the huge opportunity cost of not recovering it.
”This colossal outstanding debt of N4.4 trillion is bigger than the N3.85 trillion capital expenditure budget of the federal government of Nigeria in 2021. It is also bigger than the N3.12 trillion total foreign debt service and N3.7 trillion personnel cost for the year,”
“It is also bigger than the N3.12 trillion for total foreign debt service for 2021,” according to him.
Mr Joshua Ikioda said the AMCON mandate was to recover Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) from debtors, mainly billionaires cut across several sectors of the economy and return the funds to government coffers to support the economy.
He noted that after over 9 years into its operation, the agency had recovered only N1 trillion through assets seizures, forfeiture or cash payments.
The Group Head, Enforcement said the Amended AMCON Act, which was signed by President Muhammadu Buhari, gave the agency sweeping powers to recover debts owed by obligors.