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BY PETER DURU
MAKURDI- Following the declaration by the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS that the nation’s economy has gone into recession, social critic and former All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship aspirant in Benue state, Mr. Nath Apir has stated that Nigerians are currently regretting voting for President Muhammadu Buhari at the last general elections.
Apir who spoke Thursday, in Makurdi, lamented that the APC led government had failed to do the needful to sustain the level of economic growth recorded by ex-President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration.
He said, “during the last administration. Our economy was performing above average. This government came in and because every government comes in to fix the problems of the previous government. It took Presidemt Buhari six months to appoint Ministers in a country where, whether rightly or wrongly was rated by the World Bank and the IMF as Africa’s largest and number one economy. We did not get that rating through bribe.
“On coming to government it behoved this administration to inflate the tyres that were low on air pressure, grease those bearings that needed to be oiled so that we don’t grind to a halt just like we are in now.
“Our country is in shambles, the people can hardly feed, the Naira has crashed to over N400 to the Dollar. They talk of recovering money from looters and we have not seen where the monies have gone to. Where exactly are the three or five key pillars of the economic policies of the APC government?
“Agree that there are issues of militancy in the south south, other governments also faced same challenge. Buhari came in with a military mentality to crush them. Look, civilized people negotiate, they don’t do that because they are weak. They do that beacuse they know that you cannot go forward in a situation of crisis and chaos.
“He has just aggravated our economic situation in the country. Six months no Minister and the country was drifting and has not recovered till today and he has brought us to this level. Nigerians are regretting voting Buhari, that is the truth.
Continuing, Apir said, “all his policies had been anti corruption, by the time he came in as military ruler in 1983 we resorted to the purchasing of essential commodities. We are back to that vicious circle. We are back to anti corruption war without real economic policies.
“Let me tell you, western countries are neck deep in corruption. Don’t be deceived, they have been receiving stolen monies from Africa without questioning the sources of such wealth. Today we are asking for the return of those monies and they are asking for proof that the monies are our own when they did not ask the alleged thieves where they got the monies from.
“These are basic things we should know, they use the monies to develop their economies. President Buhari’s war on corruption is excellent and I support it, but he must not use his anti corruption war to destroy the country’s economy.
“He should strengthen institutions to fight corruption. You want to fight corruption go after bankers, permanent secretaries as well, don’t just go after only highly exposed political people. These people cannot transfer monies without the banks. Permanent secretaries are the accounting officers of their offices. How come they are not being held to account.
“The economy is in shambles and he has no solution. The experience of the Finance Minister is low. Who is running this economy. You cannot assemble a group of yes sir people and expect good results. No one to challenge you. An educated man said, ‘we are all ignorant of everything except in that which we know’, that is why you need great minds around you as a leader. So our country is in recession, though I’m not surprise because we had same in 1983 to 1985.
“Who is running this economy? As a President he is looking at a maze but you cannot read or lead the economy inside that maze without anybody interpreting it to you, it’s a matrix. Buhari has to reorganize his administration, he has to push out those who obviously have no business in the government, corrupt and inefficient people are everywhere in this government they must leave now to save our country.”
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