The All Progressives Congress (APC) has responded to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar’s suggestions to the Buhari-led administration on the need to diversify Nigeria’s economy. 

In a statement signed by the party’s National Publicity Secretary Lanre Issa-Onilu, the APC thanked Atiku for the suggestions. 

However, they expressed surprise that the former Vice President did not acknowledge the bold efforts the Buhari-led administration has made in the last five years towards diversification of the economy and the other “positive gains” Nigeria has recorded. The APC probed further and asked if the omission was unintentional or an “inconvenient”  truth to admit? 

The APC highlighting the President’s economic diversification efforts in office, said President Muhammad Buhari launched the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP), an intervention policy primarily aimed at giving farmers access to finance as far back as 2016. 

According to the statement, the policy has in the last four years provided hundreds of billions of naira for rice farming, cultivation and milling. Noting that  Nigeria is now rated the highest producer of rice in Africa, producing over seven million tonnes per annum. 

The APC also highlighted the Buhari-led administration’s success in the local production of fertiliser to boost agric saying it was one policy personally driven by the President.

The party faulted Atiku’s claim that land border closure is an “insane” policy.  In response, APC said Buhari’s decision to close the land border “has led to a significant spike in rice production across the country, opening up of hundreds of rice mills, indigenous manufacturing firms are sourcing their raw materials locally, boom in poultry farming, with Nigerians, now patronising locally made food items like never before ... and, in the process, boosting the income of farmers and local producers.”

“It is heart-warming to know we are coping well as the Coronavirus pandemic and the resultant lockdowns are testing our country’s capacity to feed itself. We have been able to meet the pandemic ... induced surge in demand for foods only because the APC administration has been implementing policies targeted at expanding the capacity of our farmers and the other players in the allied industries. We ask Atiku ; where would we have gotten the farm produce palliatives and feed our people during the lockdown if we had not taken the courageous route of looking inwards while curtailing sabotage from neighbouring economies?”

Read More: Quick Spot Economic Analysis

In the areas of plugging revenue leakages, curbing waste, diversifying and growing the economy, budgeting, borrowings, ease of doing business, support of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs), the President Muhammadu Buhari government is matching electoral promises with actions.

Since the launch of the National Action Plan on Ease of Doing Business, being driven by the Presidential Enabling and Business Environment Council (PEBEC), the APC government has aggressively implemented major reforms by reducing the challenges faced by the Minor, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) in accessing credits, paying taxes, amongst others.


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