The Minister of finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, said on Tuesday that the Nigerian economy was gradually coming out of its worst recession in years.
“Nigeria is coming out of recession. We are beginning to see the signs and we will come out to become stronger,” Adeosun said.
She spoke at an Abuja Town Hall meeting, organised by the Ministry of Information and Culture in Abuja.
According to the minister, though the administration inherited a bad economy, it has succeeded in cleaning all the mess in the system and put steps in place to check further revenue leakages.
She said the six per cent to GDP was one of the lowest in the world and as such plans were ongoing to make Nigerians pay commensurate taxes to release more revenue for infrastructure development.
She assured that the government will continue on the part of increasing capital vote to deepen infrastructure development.
Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr, Udoma Udo Udoma, also highlight the focus of the 2017 budget, which he said was designed to take the country out of recession, assuring that the country would experience the impact.
In his contribution, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Information Minister, said the administration had fulfilled its campaign promises of providing security, fight against corruption and rebuilding the economy.
On his part, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbe, speaking on herdsmen issue, said government had so far trained about 3,000 Agro Rangers in conjunction with the Ministries of Defence and Interior to curb the menace of killer herdsmen across the country with plans to train more.
He said: “We have trained 3,000 Agro rangers in collaboration with Ministries of Defence and Interior to engage the violent herdsmen. Most of the violent herdsmen, 90 per cent we see in Nigeria are not Nigerians. We will take the matter to AU and World Bank to see how we can discourage open grazing. Ranches are what we need.”
He added that government plans to crash the price of local rice to make it affordable for Nigerians.
He said the plan was to protect the interest of local rice farmers and prevent importers of foreign rice from pushing them out of business, adding: “With the new policy of the current administration on rice, the importation of rice into Nigeria dropped from 158,000 tonnes to 58 tonnes in 2016, saving the country about $237.8 million in one year.”
On the activities of Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, the minister, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said the ministry created 9,000 direct jobs and 60,000 indirect jobs in the power sector during the 2016 budget implementation process.
In the Works sector, he said about 17,749 jobs were also created, while 68,000 direct jobs were created and 41,400 indirect jobs in the Housing sector.
On housing, Fashola said the administration had completed 1800 mortgage houses through the Federal Mortgage Bank and provided loan access to 2,044 civil servants.
SOURCE :The Nigerian Voice (business)