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Nigeria’s economy to experience significant growth soon – Shettima

He insisted that the monitoring of key performance indicators in the policy document was critical to the success of the government.

Nigeria’s economy to experience significant growth soon – Shettima [NAN]

Shettima stated this on Thursday in Abuja at the 2nd Chronicle Roundtable, organised by 21st Century Media Services, publishers of 21st Century Chronicle.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was part of the group’s public service enlightenment series.

The Vice President implored Nigerians to be patient with the administration of President Bola Tinubu as he steered the ship of state through the economic turbulence and storm he met on the ground on the assumption of office.

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” Soon, Nigeria’s economy will experience significant growth once we’ve overcome these sacrifices.

” Positive changes will soon be evident across all economic indicators – inflation, per capita income, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), poverty reduction, food security -, and all aspects close to the hearts of our people,” he said.

Shettima, who was the Guest Speaker at the roundtable explained some key policy decisions taken by the Tinubu administration as well as its economic and social agenda, including the removal of subsidies on petroleum products.

He described the removal of fuel subsidy as the ‘biggest elephant in the room’ before Tinubu took charge.

“We met on the ground, especially the nation’s ailing economy which was already tottering towards an eclipse.

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“We look forward to the positive impact on the economy that will be brought by some of our new initiatives in some sectors including, oil and gas, creative arts, steel and solid minerals, housing, blue economy, and digital.

” There is no doubt that there’s a time to plant and a time to reap.

“In between those times, we appeal for patience and seek collective sacrifice from all, especially from us.

“We wish there were a way to treat this ailment without surgery,” he said

The Vice President noted that the decision to remove fuel subsidies was quite tough considering its negative impacts on the lives of the citizens.

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He said the removal, however, became an inevitable option when it was discovered that the immediate past administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari did not make provision for it in the 2023 budget.

Shettima said that Tinubu chose the option that would save the life of the nation, instead of one that would merely prolong its imminent and predicted economic death.

“We understood why our predecessor made the decision not to budget for fuel subsidy in their final fiscal year because Nigeria’s debt service-to-revenue ratio had grown to 111.8 per cent.

” The anticipated debt crisis may sound like fancy economic jargon to the man on the street.

“However, you and I are in a better position to understand how such miscalculations have played out in other countries. It’s an economic death sentence,” he said.

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Shettima added: “In plain terms, our debt servicing was such that if you earned, say, N100,000, the entirety of the money wasn’t only paid to your debtor; you were forced to borrow an additional N11,800 to pay the debtor.

“How do you intend to survive this, and how many more loans before you become a pariah?

“We are not even discussing the nation’s budget deficits, diversions of resources from critical sectors of the economy, and corruption masterminded in the subsidy regime”.

The Vice President noted that, whoever had succeeded the previous government, would have either chosen to steer the ship through the storm as Tinubu is doing or jumped ship and let the country implode.

He said those who contested the presidency with Tinubu were not morally justified to question the decision to remove fuel subsidy because it was part of the solutions they also tabled before Nigerians.

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“This was because, whether in handling the subsidy matter or the forex crisis, they had also promised the solutions we had adopted.

“Those who attempted to eat their words were instantly proven wrong by data, history, and their antecedents—those emotionless reality checkers,” he said.

Shettima said, for long, Nigeria had endured economic sabotage, leading to the resolve by the CBN Governor, Yemi Cardoso, and the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, to neutralise the overpowering influence of currency manipulators.

The manipulators, according to the Vice President, had conspired to frustrate government reforms.

”Today, I stand proud to say that their interventions have translated into desired results, and Naira’s pushback against all odds is an inspiring journey that doesn’t have to be learned in Buenos Aires, as some would want us to do,” he said

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Earlier, the Chairman of Ministry of Finance Incorporated and former Finance Minister, Dr Shamsudeen Usman, praised the content of the Renewed Hope Agenda of the Tinubu administration.

He described it as one of the most detailed and carefully crafted policy documents in the history of the country.

He stressed the need for the Renewed Hope Agenda document to be reviewed and integrated into the medium and long-term development framework of the country.

Usman noted that policy consistency with a long-term vision to transform critical sectors of the economy was the way to go.

He commended the administration’s establishment of a central coordination delivery unit to track the performance of programmes, policies and key interventions of the Federal Government.

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He insisted that the monitoring of key performance indicators in the policy document was critical to the success of the government.

Malam Mahmud Jega, the Chief Executive Officer of 21st Century Chronicle Media Services, said the media has the responsibility to critically analyse government policies and programmes.

Doing so, according to him, would translate to contributing to shaping the nation’s development trajectory.

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