While speaking with journalists in Onitsha, Anambra State on Sunday, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, said Nigeria would have been in ruins by now if President Muhammadu Buhari was not elected to pilot the affairs of the country in 2015.
According to PUNCH, the influential politician said that the All Progressives Congress (APC) met the country in tatters when it took over from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) about three years ago.
He expressed surprise that Nigerians were not “clapping” for Buhari for reviving the economy of the country from what he called comatose state.
When he was reminded that the general feeling was that Buhari had failed in areas of security and economy, Ngige said, “Don’t just talk about that. We are wonderful with the economy; nobody, I mean no person would have done better than this present government in those two areas.
“I want you to take something away and that thing is that any other person handling this situation; economy, security, it would have been worse.
“We came in and oil nosedived to $37 a barrel with a production of 600,000 barrels per day, a drop from 2.2 million and yet we managed the economy out of recession.
“Nigerians should be clapping for us on a daily basis, and after thanking God, they should thank us. Yes, because God has used Buhari and some of us to make Nigeria work.”
The Minister said the Buhari’s administration had created over eight million jobs through agriculture and allied industries, stressing that previous governments had depended on oil money and failed to diversify the economy.
“We’ve encouraged people and said there is dignity in labour with the hand. Today, we are second to America in world production of sorghum; today, we are importing about four percent of the rice needs of the country,” he said.
“Prior to that, this country was spending $5m daily on rice and about $1.8b annually on rice importation. And you don’t want to clap for us!”