By Kelvin Meluwa
Spokesman of the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council, Mr Charles Aniagwu, says PDP’s presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar is already working to secure debt relief for Nigeria.
Aniagwu, also Delta Commissioner for Information, stated on Thursday in Asaba that Atiku and his running mate, Delta’s Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa, were adequately prepared to transparently manage the nation’s economy and create jobs.
“Atiku wants to bring back jobs. In his policy document, he intends to discuss with Nigeria’s creditors to seek their support in rescheduling the debts and possibly get forgiveness.
“He will ensure utmost transparency and responsibility in deployment of loans.
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“As at the last quarter of 2014, Nigeria’s domestic debt was N9.6 trillion, today it is N26.9 trillion; as at the last quarter of 2014, our foreign debt was as low as N1.6 trillion, today it is N17.1 trillion.
“Nigeria’s ways and means was just about 0.6 billion as allowed by the law but today it is about N23 billion and that is a government that claims to have done so well.
“Atiku and Obasanjo did it in 1999 and I have said earlier that where we are now is almost like where we were in 1999,’’ he stated.
Aniagwu added that Nigeria currently spends hundreds of billions of naira in excess of its earnings on debt servicing.
He noted that Atiku would get the private sector involved to stimulate productivity.
“He will reduce unemployment by stimulating growth in the agriculture sector and also partner with the private sector which employed a lot of Nigerians during the GSM revolution.
“That is what Atiku and Okowa want to do and not just moving the country from consumption to production without telling us what you want to produce and how you want to produce it.
“Atiku has six companies and all of them are into production, none of them is involved in importation.
“We are talking of practicality and not those writing prose and trying to turn it to poem.
“As at 1999, the jobs had gone and the middle class had been wiped off, but Atiku and Obasanjo came in with Atiku heading the economy as Chairman of the National Economic Council and the economy grew by about 14.6 per cent as at 2006 and 2007.
“They were able to do it by introducing the GSM revolution, banking consolidation and other economic policies which stimulated economic growth.’’ Aniagwu stated. (NAN)