Save for those who may have been living under a rock, it should no longer come as news to hear that Nigerian economy is currently in recession.
This state of things would however come as a familiar territory to President Muhammadu Buhari who also had to lead a nation in recession during his first stint as head of state in 1985.
Many have criticised Buhari’s handling of the economy even as his administration continues to blame the country’s economic woes on the previous government who it claimed mismanaged the national treasury and failed to save for rainy days.
As the blame game continues, citizens groan under poverty, high cost of living and depreciation of the nation’s currency. The masses are the worst hit.
Here’s a list of unavoidable decisions President Buhari must make to lead Nigeria out of the present economic quagmire:
1. Use Recovered Funds To Boost Local Manufacturers
The current administration claimed it was winning the war against corruption and has recovered huge sums of money from some elites especially those who served in the previous administration, it is important that these loot which wasn’t budgeted for, be deliberately used to boost local manufacturers to the capacity of exporting local goods. It is sad that the Nigerian economy is a consumption economy, which largely depends on imports; boosting local manufacturers’ capacity with funds, tax holidays and other incentives will encourage Nigerians to patronise made in the Nigeria goods. Inner city policies should be introduced, this will create enabling environment for local manufacturers and encourage foreign investments.
2. Reshuffle Cabinet
There has been debate on whether president Buhari should reshuffle his cabinet members, following harsh economic situation. It will not be out of place for the president to carry out holistic review of his cabinet and determine which ministries or agencies are lagging behind in contributing positively to the economic. It is also critical that the President appoints technocratic as ministers, not politicians.
3. Increase Minimum wage
One thing all economists agreed on as part of solution to recovering from recession is pumping money into the economy. President Buhari, as a matter of urgency should increase minimum wage to boost purchasing power of the citizens. Government can also borrow, provided there is a pay-back structure.
4. Cut Government cost including National Assembly
Although, the present administration claims it was cutting cost, more still needs to be done in this regards. Buhari must ensure that cost of running government is reduced further. Estacode allowances, security votes of the executives and legislative should be deleted. This will ensure huge chunk of the nation’s resources doesn’t end up in the pockets of few politicians.
5. Introduce terminal free tax policies and Create Massive Employment
According to data by the National Bureau of Statistics, Nigeria’s unemployment stands at 13.3 per cent as at the end of the second quarter. That represents 26.06 million citizens who are jobless. This is a waste of huge human resources and capital; President Buhari must urgently call his economic managers to a roundtable to find ways of engaging this large number of jobless citizens who could have contributed greatly to the ailing economic.
Government should also introduce terminal free tax policies for foreign investors to encourage more investors to bring monies in within the free tax period, this will also create employment. – Greennews
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