President Muhammadu Buhari has vowed never to stop blaming his predecessors for the current economic woes of the country despite the public outcry against the buck passing.
He said it was necessary to let Nigerians, especially the youth to know the state of the nation for them to properly evaluate the performance of their leaders.
It will be recalled that the president at a function in his Daura home during last Salleh celebrations came down hard on former President Olusegun Obasanjo, late Musa Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan, saying that the 16 years rule of the Peoples Democracy Party, PDP, left no legacy for the country. Also, speaking on Thursday night at an interactive session tagged: “Conversation with Creative Youth,” with some distinguished Nigerian youths from the entertainment and fashion industry at the Old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja; the president insisted that the PDP ruined the economy.
The president used the occasion which also featured the official launching of a Pictorial Book compiled by his personal photographer, Mr. Bayo Omoboriowo to assure the youth of his government’s commitment to security amongst others.
He said:“My dear countrymen especially the youth, you have a fantastic country, God has endowed Nigeria with human and material resources. “I am not going to bore you with what we met on ground, I know when I say this, I am going to be accused in the papers of passing the buck, but passing the buck is sometimes absolutely necessary, to remind people who take things for granted.
“When we came in by some unfortunate coincidence, I screamed to high heavens because I had promised a lot while seeking votes. “I asked where are the savings? There were no savings. There was no infrastructure: power, rails, roads; there was none. I then asked, what did we spend our money on? I was told we spent it on buying food and petrol.
“We conducted a study to find out where the billions of Naira had gone and found out that the oil marketers were committing fraud on at least one third of what they were importing, which is about 25 per cent of our foreign exchange. “This brings me to the youth, as youths we must watch our elites, the condition we found ourselves, it is unpatriotic for anybody to pretend that economically we haven’t got a problem.
“Today a lot of people have gone back to the farms; I congratulate some of the governors and by the grace of God, by the end of this government we will be exporting rice and othergrains.
So all the money alleged to have been used to import it will be available to sustain development. “I have bored you with this long explanation, because there are things that could be hidden from you by those that have mismanaged the country in the last 16, 17 years.
“I assure you that we will set the ball rolling… in terms of security, industrialization, manufacturing and food security.
“I said it more than five years ago, and I still mean it, we have no other country than Nigeria; we will stay here and salvage it together.” Impressed by the exploits of the Nigerian youth in the Nollywood, President Buhari said he would ensure that a reasonable portion of the 2017 national budget is given for the development of the youths.
“In this short while, I have learnt a lot and I know much about our limitations with respect to power, manufacturing and how all these can help the creative industry thrive.
“We have been focusing on security challenges so as to create room for prosperity and progress, so be rest assured that the government has done its work to identify our problems and work is going on to address them.
“Today, the film industry which comes under Nollywood can now compare favourably with Hollywood. Nigerian youths have indeed, done the country proud,” he said.