Amaechi, Sonaiya, others make case for relevant government policies, implementation
Notable personalities such as former transportation minister, Rotimi Amaechi; former presidential candidate of KOWA Party, Prof. Remi Sonaiya; presidential aide, Ismael Ahmed; and FBNQuest Merchant Bank economist, Chinwe Egwim, canvassed this at the event themed ‘Turning the Curve: Aligning Government Policies To Our Realities’ which held at Muson Centre, Lagos.
Focusing on accountability, Amaechi said the problem with Nigeria was that citizens and voters failed to hold politicians and leaders accountable for their actions and policies.
Speaking on ineffective policies and extreme poverty, the ex-minister explained that the country’s wealth had been in the pocket of a few influential individuals. He, therefore, called on politicians to invest in infrastructure to create jobs and reduce crime.
“I know politicians who have suddenly become billionaires, and this is the money that should have been used to build roads and provide amenities that could have been used to improve the lives of citizens.
“Our politicians have to be clear about how they intend to lift people out of poverty. China lifted over 800 million people out of poverty in 15 years,” he said.
Commenting on citizen participation, Sonaiya said, “We have to educate ourselves to become more active, and we have to begin to consider the greater good in our decisions. Most of us don’t care about what is happening in the House of Assembly.
“We are much more concerned about ourselves. The focus has to be on the people, not the government. But we as the people also have to make sure that we hold our leaders accountable. There’s too much personal style in the way we practice politics in the country.”
Calling for national restructuring, Chief Operating Officer, Crest-Agro Products, Leonard Ebute, stated that several leaders and groups benefit from the insecurity in the country. He called on Nigerians to be more realistic and call out anyone holding the nation to ransom.
On her part, Egwim stated that for effective policy implementation in Nigeria, there had to be synergy in government ministries, while former commissioner of finance in Cross River State, Asuquo Ekpenyong, called for total government transparency.
Explaining the attitude of citizens towards police brutality, rapper, Michael Ugochukwu, known as Ruggedman, said that Nigerians needed to start asking questions whenever they notice that things are not right.
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