Nigeria’s total public debt rose to N28.62 trillion ($79.5 billion) as of March, up 15 per cent from a year earlier, the Debt Management Office (DMO) said on Friday.

Nigeria has been racking up debt to fund infrastructure projects and boost a sluggish economy now projected to fall into recession following the impact of an oil price crash triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.

Nigeria had a series of debt issues lined up this year before the collapse in oil prices, the country’s main export, forcing the government to shelve foreign commercial borrowing.