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FG’s economic policies are working, Buhari insists

By Terhemba Daka and Sodiq Omolaoye, Abuja
28 January 2022   |   3:04 am
The affirmation came as state governors and the organised labour, on Wednesday, faulted the N3 trillion subsidy bill the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) presented to the Federal Executive Council.

Buhari

Govt approves plans for
science, innovation-driven economy

President Muhammadu Buhari has insisted economic policies of his administration are working.

He made this known in Sokoto State, yesterday when he inaugurated the new three million metric tonnes/per annum BUA Cement Line 4 Factory.

The affirmation came as state governors and the organised labour, on Wednesday, faulted the N3 trillion subsidy bill the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) presented to the Federal Executive Council.

They maintained that the “lacuna in the subsidy removal agenda was hidden in the untruths bandied by administrators of the subsidy, particularly the NNPC, which both groups identify to be at the forefront of mismanagement of the proceeds that accrued therein.”

The President recalled that in 1985, as the then Head of State, he was at the same location to commission the second line of the facility.

He said: “Today, almost 37 years later, to commission the fourth line is a very special day for me, personally. As you all know, one of the key economic pillars of our administration has been to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive. This is necessary for job creation and indeed, for our economy and national security.

“In the past few weeks, I visited Ogun and Kaduna States where I observed many private sector investments in action. And today, I am here in Sokoto to commission this multi-billion naira project.

‘’It is, therefore, very clear for all to see that our policies are working. Progress is gradually being made in all parts of the country.”

The President also pledged that his administration would continue to support serious investors to set up businesses that will take advantage of huge reserves of resources in different parts of the country.

He thanked the founder of BUA Cement, Abdul Samad Rabiu, and the entire team for the work they are doing in supporting the government’s economic diversification and job creation agenda.

He noted that the company, which has completed four new cement plants of similar capacity in the last five years in different parts of the country and is set to complete two more plants soon, has shown faith in Nigeria and its potential.

The President also used the occasion to reassure Nigerians that his government would continue to invest heavily in roads and rails to ease the movement of people, goods and services, with a view to facilitating trade, while lowering logistics costs associated with the inefficiencies of bad roads and bridges.

Rabiu, who commended the President for creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, acknowledged the support of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and its Governor in setting up the gigantic project.

He said: ‘So far, we have invested over a billion dollars in the past four years and we urge the CBN to continue to support industries like ours that use locally sourced raw materials to add value.’’

He pledged that BUA would continue to invest more in the cement industry until Nigeria is self-sufficient and the commodity is available, accessible, and affordable for all Nigerians.

MEANWHILE, Federal Government has approved five additional policies to help move the nation’s economy from being commodity-dependent to innovation-driven

Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Ogbonnaya Onu, disclosed this at the validation workshop on the draft revised 2022 National Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy in Abuja, yesterday.

He said: “Our professionals, contractors and manufacturers are given preference in procurement by the Federal Government. Gradually many Nigerians are now buying made in Nigeria products. Our economy is now diversified and we are all working hard to deepen the diversification. Nigeria is changing in a positive way. Good things are happening in Nigeria.”

On the STI policy review, the minister noted that it should be constantly updated to accommodate new technological changes for today and the future. He added that the STI policy gives direction to every area of national life.

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