Prepare For Another Wave Of Recession, Zamfara Governor Tells Governor-Elects

Zamfara State Governor Abdulaziz Yari has warned of an impending recession by the mid-2020. Besides, Yari pointed out that the governors h...

Zamfara State Governor Abdulaziz Yari has warned of an impending recession by the mid-2020.

Besides, Yari pointed out that the governors have unanimously agreed that borrowing cannot be a reliable solution to the country’s economic problems.

Yari, who is the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) spoke yesterday at the opening of a three-day retreat for returning governors and governors-elect in Abuja.

In his remarks, the NGF chair said that the current economic reality should prepare the mind of the governors ahead of the possibility of another recession by the middle of next year.
He, however, said the governors’ good spirit and preparedness will enable them to contain the situation.

Yari urged them to work in unity to boost the economy and to look inward by boosting their revenue generation base.

Speaking against the backdrop of the country’s dependence on crude oil which price has been fluctuating in recent time, Yari said: “This scenario is a wake-up call for all of you to come amply prepared to face these kinds of challenges especially since we are expecting the possibility of another cycle of recession by mid-2020 and which may last up to the third quarter of 2012.

“Your good spirit of stewardship will make you contain the situation should there be one. As members of the National Economic Council (NEC) you must work hand in hand to boost the economy in tandem with the global best practices.”

On the issue of borrowing, Yari said: “It is imperative to note that the NGF, under my chairmanship, and the National Economic Council under the chairmanship of His Excellency, the Vice President, had agreed that borrowing is never a reliable alternative to solving our economic problems.

“We must work hard among all the tiers of government to multiply our revenue generation base so that together we change the course of doing government business for the betterment of our people.”

The Zamfara governor also challenged key revenue agencies, including the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Federal Inland Revenue Services, the Nigerian Custom Services and other agencies on the need to work more effectively, especially now that the N30, 000 minimum wage bill has been signed into law.

The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador W. Stuart Symington, urged the incoming governors on the need to boost their states economy.

He also urged them to identify and approach and encourage local investors to shore up their revenue base.

“As governors, look for people in business in your states”, Symington said, encouraging the governors-elect to invest in the people.

“How do we invest in human capital development?” he asked. “Invest in people and earn trust. You do that at a speed of trust.”

On security, the envoy said: “I know security is on everyone’s mind and governance is also in everyone’s mind. Security is not the job of security forces alone. There must be cooperation between the security forces and the civil populace.”

Also charging the governors-elect, First Bank of Nigeria Chairman, Mrs. Ibikunle Awosika, said they must earn the trust of the electorate.

Mrs. Awosika, who spoke on the topic: “The task of Nation building”, said: “Governors must earn the trust of the people. If you earn the trust of the people, they will pay taxes. When you see children that are hungry in your state, you have failed them in some way. We have the capacity’s to solve some of the problems. Your commitment to helping the people is what will help you achieve what you want to do.

“For a nation to be truly great, the integrity of every man in this table is critical. You have a chance to build a legacy. Live true to your values. When you think with that determination, you will achieve. Pick your priorities right, deliver on them because you cannot do everything and your people will understand. You will get much more than wealth after office if you so well for your people.

“For a nation to be truly great, the integrity of every man in this table is critical. You have a chance to build a legacy. Live true to your values. When you think with that determination, you will achieve.

“Pick your priorities right. Deliver on them because you cannot do everything and your people will understand. You will get much more than wealth after office if you do well for your people.”

Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese Dr. Mathew Kukah, noted: “There are people who are not in office, but they are in power and there are people who are in office but are not in power.

“We must find a way to talk to the hearts of the people. There are people who are not in office, but they are in power and there are people who are in office but are not in power.

“We live in a country that some think loyalties are to institutions, parties and regimes. The challenges that this nation faces, none have been truly articulated. For those elected, what are you doing now? For those going, what are you doing now?

“Now is a very busy time for prayer warriors hoping that they will be in the governors’ (appointment) list. People hardly get into positions purely on the basis of their track record.”

He challenged the governors-elect on the need to busy themselves reading books that will enrich their knowledge.

“What (book) are you reading now? Everybody taking over must focus on the beat and in the worst case scenario, read great biographies: Mandela, Lee Kwan, Gandi and the rest.

“I suggest these books: “The rebels who brought Churchill to power and saved England and “The jungle grows back. It helps to tell you that elections alone are not enough in democracy. Infrastructure is not just about railways, highways, else we don’t need democracy.

“Everything is politics but politics is not everything. There are people bringing glory to our country without being in power. It is too early in the day for Nigerians to become lethargic on our democracy

“When Everton defeated Man United, Solkjaer turned and apologised to the fans. Why? If the stadium is not full, we don’t have a team. Voter apathy is not good for our democracy. If ethnicity is a disability, America will not have been great today.

“Final book I recommend is “The end of power”. We need to find people willing to invest in our people. That has not happened. When people cannot see a reflection of themselves in government, they shut down. A leader must have the courage to take decisions.

“Many of you (governors) are young and have an idea of how the world is organised. You have an opportunity ahead of you.”

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