President Muhammadu Buhari has, for the umpteenth time, blamed the country’s growing challenges of insecurity and poverty on what he called decades of neglect and resource mismanagement by the its past leaders.
The President who spoke on Tuesday in Abuja when a delegation from Ecobank Transnational Incorporated visited him at the Presidential Villa, also called on the bank to support the agricultural sector by setting up a special fund for the purpose.
He told the delegation led Ecobank Group’s Chairman, Mr Emmanuel Imazoboh, that Nigeria, with its natural endorsements, was positioned to achieve greatness, but that years of poor management caused by large-scale corruption ensured that the country failed to attain its potential.
“If assets and resources available to Nigeria were properly managed, she would be prosperous and peaceful,” Buhari said. “But the poverty and insecurity we are experiencing today are results of decades of neglect and resource mismanagement.”
The visiting team had earlier urged the him to see to the speedy decongestion of the Apapa Ports and the reconstruction of the transnational Lagos-Badagry-Seme Road.
In his response, the President said: “We are aware and are working in all those areas, and by the grace of God, you will start seeing results during my second term in office.”
Mr. Ikazoboh who spoke to State House Correspondents after the meeting with the President said he was able to relay to the President some of the challenges Nigeria was facing. He noted that once Nigeria gets it right, the rest of Africa will move forward.
“In our speech, we have told him some of the challenges Nigeria and Africa are facing. Like I said earlier on if Nigeria is sorted out, Africa is sorted out, and some of these challenges are infrastructure, of which they are working on assiduously.
“Also, we are talking about the Seme Road because of the West African trade route which we think should be given some priority. And to thank him also for the steps he is taking to clear the Apapa port because that is where trade is coming into Nigeria.”