President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday insisted that his administration inherited an economy that was in a shambles amid widespread corruption and mismanagement of the commonwealth worsened by a sharp drop in the prices of oil crude at the international market.
Besides, he stated that the All Progressives Congress (APC) government was handed an empty treasury, depleted foreign reserves and dilapidated infrastructure.
According to him, other liabilities incurred by his government were capital constraints, food import dependency, long-standing insurgency, internal security challenges and indebtedness resulting in the inability of many state governments to pay salaries of workers.
Speaking in Jos during the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) graduation of Senior Executive Course 40, Buhari submitted that good governance involves transparency and prudence in public finance, social justice as well as investing in the poor and creating employment for the youths.
Represented by the Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan, the president said: “When we assumed leadership in 2015, what we met was an economy in a shambles as a result of widespread corruption and mismanagement of the national commonwealth, compounded by a sharp drop in the prices of oil.
“Indeed, we inherited an empty treasury, depleted foreign reserves, poor and dilapidated infrastructure, huge capital and current liabilities, food import dependency, long-standing insurgency, a myriad of internal security challenges, and a situation whereby many state governments owed workers salaries. To make matter worse, the economy also went into a recession.”
“These inherited circumstances put us under extreme difficulty, particularly when measured against the expectations of Nigerians who voted for us expecting a better governance.”
We had to develop and implement some policies that would quickly get us out of this unsavoury situation.”
He continued: “To address the problems fundamentally, we put in place several policy frameworks, the major one being the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), which laid out the strategy for achieving government’s vision of sustained and inclusive growth.
“The ERGP provided the framework for short-term recovery and structural reforms aimed at diversifying the economy to set it on a path of sustainable growth over the medium and long term. We took further measures, including the Executive Order on Ease of Doing Business, to address identified bottlenecks.”