The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, has outlined some steps on how Nigeria’s economy should be taken out of recession.
She was one of the guests on the 2017 special May Day edition of the programme, The Platform; a lecture series organised by the Covenant Christian Center Lagos.
While addressing Nigeria’s financial crisis, Mrs Adeosun blamed the past administration for concentrating only on current expenditure, leaving the agriculture sector and other areas unattended to.
According to her, what the government spent money on, were the wrong things and that’s the result the nation now suffers.
“There is always a lag between action and effect. We are now suffering the effect of what was done two, three years ago.
“Ninety per cent of government expenditure was on what we call recurrent, which involves salaries, travel, training, welfare (food), that’s what we were spending money on and only 10% went on capital.
“Capital includes roads, rail, power, housing, building educational institutions and only 10% of government expenditure was capital.
As a way forward, she however, stated that “For the rest of the economy, agriculture, services, banking, trade, people must pay taxes; there must be more revenue. We can’t all rely on oil.
“We are going to be pushing out quite a few initiatives to improve our revenue. Then on our course, we will continue to be efficient, prudent, continue to make sure that every Naira counts.”
Also speaking at the programme was the former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, who believes that the nation has imbibed a system of eating for today only and letting tomorrow take care of itself.
“The reason why we are talking about massive borrowing today is because we didn’t save yesterday.
“No nation can survive without saving for tomorrow – Never, and that is the crisis we face today,” he asserted.
Mrs Adeosun however, stressed that the past is gone and in moving forward, the plan is to improve oil and non-oil taxes in order to get the balance right.