The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has clarified his comparison of the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government with that of United States, in the area of infrastructure.
At an All Progressives Congress (APC) forum in Kano on Thursday, the minister had said the All Progressives Congress (APC) government had achieved what America “is trying to do in terms of infrastructure”.
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“From six years ago, this government led by President Muhammadu Buhari, as far as infrastructure is concerned, has been doing what the United States government is still trying to do; they (in the US) are still trying to pass their infrastructure bill and they are still fighting,” he had said.
But while inspecting the ongoing Abuja-Kaduna-Kano road project on Friday, Fashola clarified the issue that had generated a controversy.
He said, “The first point to make is I didn’t say that Nigeria’s infrastructure is better than America’s infrastructure because certainly anybody who knows what he is doing will know that America is a much richer nation, their infrastructure is well ahead of Nigeria.
“What I was talking about at the presentation with the APC youth was about the challenges of infrastructure, and that it is universal, every country commits to infrastructure as a legitimate way to create work, grow the economy and distribute wealth as we have seen here. That’s the first point I am making.
“And that in a democracy, you always need parliament to authorise what you spent in infrastructure. So, I was making the comparison that Buhari has been able to get his parliament to authorise his spending, and that is why we are able to gather here.
“But that the American government is struggling to get authorisation from their own parliament to start what we are already doing. I didn’t say that their infrastructure is better than theirs.”
He, however, blamed the opposition of exaggerating the issue as a way of running what he tagged “campaign of lies” against them.
“The progress we are making here is making them uncomfortable, so they can’t disprove that work is going on and infrastructure is being developed. They are going to run a campaign of lies and disinformation, so we have to be careful with them,” the Minister concluded.
On the ongoing Abuja-Kaduna-Kano road project, the Minister gave assurance that it will be completed before Buhari leave office on May 29 next year.
He however said they are trying to deliver the best project possible without compromising on quality.