Citizens Are Getting Poorer Because Nigeria Is Borrowing For Wrong Reasons – Peter Obi

 

A former vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Obi says Nigerians are getting poorer because the government is borrowing for the wrong reasons.

Mr Obi, who was a guest on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, argued that while it is not a crime to borrow money, the funds must be used solely for productions that enhance the lives of the citizens and enrich the economy.

“Are you borrowing for productivity or are you borrowing for consumption? My worry here is that we are borrowing for consumption.

“I am saying that the country is not productive and there is nothing wrong in borrowing; if you are borrowing, then it shouldn’t be for consumption and that’s why more and more people are getting poorer,” he asserted.

According to the former Anambra State governor, the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) cannot be growing while the people are getting poorer.

He believes the growth Nigeria needs is one which “pulls people out of poverty by making the people have disposable income and be able to feed themselves”.

Mr Obi further added that the nation needs the kind of growth that will educate the children and provide primary health care for all communities.

“These are critical areas we want to go into,” the statesman stressed, noting that Nigeria must do away with speculative growth that is given media hype without positively affecting the masses.

READ ALSO: Make Sacrifices To Tackle Insecurity, Jonathan Tells Nigerians

Engine of Growth 

In a bid to chart a way forward, the astute businessman said that the biggest engine for economic growth is the micro, small, and medium enterprises.

“That engine today is not being supported in Nigeria. Nigeria has a total of 40 million SMEs but there is not properly articulated fiscal and monetary policy to support the critical sector.

“The entire loan to the private sector in Nigeria today is about N30 trn. Less than N1.5 trn is going to SMEs. This is less than five per cent of the entire loan. This means Nigeria is not supporting its engine that can enhance the nation’s economic growth.

“The SMEs are the biggest employer of labour in many advanced countries of the world. We need fiscal monetary policies that would invest in this engine of growth in order to create jobs.”

Peter Obi’s comments are coming about two weeks after Nigeria’s GDP grew by 5.01% (year-on-year) in real terms in the second quarter of 2021.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the increase in the GDP index marked three consecutive quarters of growth following the negative growth rates recorded in the second and third quarters of 2020.

But the PDP stalwart maintained that the development is not a thing to rejoice about.

Insecurity: Allow Regional Security System To Function, Peter Obi Tells FG

 

The former vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and ex-Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, has asked the Federal Government to allow states to operate their regional security system.

Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Newsnight, Obi said the move would help curb the myriads of security challenges the country faces.

“Allow some region-like state security system to function. The government has to come out genuinely to tackle the issue of security of lives and properties by investing in them,” he said.

“I served as a governor and when I found out that we had a security issue, I decided that every community in Anambra State must have their own security outfit funded and supported by the government.

“If you go to Anambra State, every community has a pickup for security. In fact, some own two or three. A community like Nnewi owns four or five because it is critical.”

For Nigeria to surmount the several challenges and become better, Obi said the nation needs to restructure.

Former PDP vice presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, Peter Obi, speaks during an interview on Channels TV’s Newsnight on March 1, 2021.

 

He explained that his call for the nation’s restructuring is imperative because it appears the systems that have been operated over times isn’t producing the needed result.

READ ALSO: We Will See Better Security In Nigeria, Presidency Assures Nigerians

When asked what should be done to prevent further loss of lives in the country, the PDP chieftain reiterated his call for regional security architecture.

He explained that for the citizens to be safe, communities should have a network that will effectively guarantee their security, noting that it is the best approach.

“Just support every community, let governments of the states support every community. There is no better protection or security you can have within a community than those communities being in charge of their own security because they know the criminals.

“They know those who are foreigners in their community, so it is very easy. You can’t come to my village and provide a better community than my villagers,” he added.

Nigeria Is Not Working Because People Are Recruited On Sentiment – Peter Obi

 

Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, says the reason Nigeria tends not to be working at this moment is that many individuals in various offices were recruited based on sentiment. 

Mr. Obi stated this on Wednesday when he joined Governor Nyesom Wike to commission the Constructed Internal Road Phase 2 in Isiokpo, Ikwere Local Government Area of Rivers State.

READ ALSO: Ohanaeze Ndigbo Election: ‘Some Igbos Are Restless Characters,’ Abia Governor Condemns Factional Leadership

“The reason Nigeria is not working today is that people have been recruited based on sentiments,” Mr. Obi said, adding that this way of operating has to stop.

He said, “if we have to recruit you to be local government chairman, governor, vice president, president, and minister, it must be based on capacity and competence, which are viable not what we are doing now and the country is collapsing”.

According to the former chairman of the Nigeria Security Commission, accountability in government is a very critical yardstick to determining good governance and to build the trust of the people.

Mr. Obi thanked Governor  Wike for what he is doing for the people of Rivers State. He urged everyone who has been entrusted with the welfare of the people to give their all.

Peter Obi Blames Nigerians For Celebrating Criminality, Praising Looters

Peter Obi at the Presidential Election Petition Panel in Abuja on Wednesday, May 8, 2019. PHOTOS: Sodiq Adelakun/ Channels TV

 

Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, has called on Nigerians to stop celebrating people who loot the nation’s resources.

Obi who featured as a guest on Channels Television’s special end of the year programme on Thursday stressed the need for true democracy in the country.

He said, “I still blame the people who watch the sharing (of loots) go on and celebrate criminality. The people continue to praise those who steal money; they give them awards and titles.”

“We need to practice genuine democracy. It is not just the political class, but the people as well. People need to be part of this change.

“People are complacent. The people think you can leave it in the hands of the politicians; they have to demand that the right things happen,” the former governor added.

According to him, the actions of the politicians affect Nigerians directly and they must be committed that the right people are voted into office.

 

Looking For What To Grab

Obi, who was the vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, decried that there were incompetent people who lacked the necessary capacity elected into political offices.

He attributed this to the present situation in which the country has found itself, stressing that the way to address the issue was to ensure Nigerians do the right thing and vote competent people into political offices.

“You saw the Financial Times publication saying we are a failed state, and you have to agree with them if you look at the state of the country; look at what happened in Katsina, what happened in Imo, where a Catholic priest was kidnapped. I can go on and on.

“We have become the highest in drug prevalence. We have overtaken India in under-five mortality. So, it affects the people,” the former vice presidential candidate said.

He added, “Our country is not productive, that is why our economy is not growing. While other nations are working hard to pull themselves out of poverty, ours are going the other way round. Everybody is looking for what to grab out of the system.”

Nigeria Will Have 110m Poor People By End Of 2020 – Peter Obi

Why People Say I Am Stingy – Peter Obi
File photo of Peter Obi

 

The former vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Peter Obi has said that Nigeria will have 110million poor people by the end of 2020.

He disclosed this on Friday in Awka, the Anambra State capital during a PDP Southeast Summit ahead of the 2023 general elections.

“Your country is drifting, it is collapsing. And if you don’t do anything, it will set its revenge on you,” Obi said.

“The World Bank released a report, go and read that report. This year alone, 11 million Nigerians will fall into poverty.

“The 11 million is on top of the 100 million that is already there. That means by the end of this year, Nigeria will have over 110 million people living in poverty. It is important to know that of this 11 million person falling into poverty, eight million are youths.”

READ ALSO: COVID-19 Could Increase Nigeria’s Poverty Rate To 20 Million – World Bank Report

On his party, PDP National Chairman, Uche Secondus called on the youths to be creative and innovative, adding that power rests on them

According to the opposition, the party leadership has created a policy to initiate policies that will empower the young Nigerians.

In the World Bank’s report, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic could increase Nigeria’s poverty rate by as much as 15 to 20 million by 2022.

The latest World Bank Nigeria Development Update report tagged “rising to the challenge: Nigeria’s COVID response” stated that in the next three years, an average Nigerian could see a reversal of decades of economic growth and the country could enter its deepest recession since the 1980s.

According to the bank’s Country Director for Nigeria, Shubham Chaudhuri, if there are no measures to mitigate the impact of the crisis, the economy could shrink up to 4 percent in 2020 following the twin shocks of COVID-19 and low oil prices.

“Nigeria is at a critical historical juncture, with a choice to make. Nigeria can choose to break decisively from business-as-usual and rise to its considerable potential by sustaining the bold reforms that have been taken thus far and going even further and with an even greater sense of urgency to promote faster and more inclusive economic growth.”

Poverty, Threat To National Growth – Peter Obi

File photo of the Vice-Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Peter Obi.

 

The Vice-Presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 elections, Mr. Peter Obi, has decried the rate of poverty in Nigeria.

In a statement issued on Monday, Obi “warned that no nation can develop and prosper with a rising large poor population as in Nigeria.”

For Obi, the “poverty rate in Nigeria should worry every concerned leader because there couldn’t be national growth under this situation,” adding that “no country can develop and prosper with a rising large poor population as in Nigeria.”

He explained that “Poverty is dehumanizing, it is therefore left for humanity to create a better world by putting measures in place to eradicate poverty and give everyone the chance to live a meaningful life.”

He asked government agencies, organizations and wealthy people around the country to join hands to combat poverty and reduce it to the barest minimum so as to have a safe environment.

The former governor of Anambra State lamented that the country “has become the poverty capital of the world, with over 90 million people living in poverty and more than 15 million out-of-school children roaming the streets, Obi said that the government could not  continue to turn a blind eye to such depressing situation.”

Obi advised the Federal and state governments to invest in economic growth, explaining that doing so would “lift people out of poverty in no distant time noting that investment in education and health, and support for small businesses, remain the pivotal ways of eradicating poverty in any nation.

“To combat poverty in Nigeria, organizations and wealthy individuals must deploy their resources to support government investments in these critical areas.”

 

Court Slams N5m Judgement Against Atiku, Saraki, Others

 

The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has awarded the sum of N5 million against the 2019 Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and his campaign director, Dr Bukola Saraki, over unauthorized use of the photograph of a Lagos-based trader, Mrs Amuda Adeleke, on their campaign billboard.

Justice Ayokunle Faji, who made the monetary award in a judgment delivered on Monday, said the N5m would be jointly and severally paid by Atiku, Saraki, the PDP and Peter Obi, who was Atiku’s running mate during the election.

In a fundamental rights enforcement suit brought before the court, Adeleke through her lawyer, Kingsley Iheakaram, said the defendants used her photograph on their campaign billboard without seeking her consent.

Adeleke also explained that in December 2018, during the build-up to the 2019 general elections, agents of the Atiku Abubakar Organisation, led by Saraki, came to Oyin Jolayemi Street, Victoria Island, Lagos to campaign and mobilize support for Atiku and his running mate, Obi.

She said Saraki and his team engaged people on the street, including herself.
Adeleke said she saw members of the campaign train taking photographs during the engagement with the crowd and she thought it was merely to preserve the memory of the event.

She was, however, shocked when she began to receive phone calls from those who knew her, calling her attention to her photograph on the PDP campaign billboards in Lagos, Abuja and elsewhere.

“All my friends who saw the campaign billboard said it portrayed me as a woman stricken with poverty who had lost all hope and was prepared to commit suicide,” she said.

The trader said the unauthorised use of her photograph for the PDP presidential campaign caused her embarrassment.

She, therefore, asked the court to award N45m against the defendants for infringing on her fundamental right to privacy as enshrined, in the 1999 Constitution.

Justice Faji gave judgment in her favour and subsequently awarded N5 million only against the defendants.

Peter Obi Sympathises With Buhari, Abba Kyari’s Family

The Presidency said the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, died on April 17, 2020. Inset: a photo combination of President Muhammadu Buhari and Mr Peter Obi.

 

 

A former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, has condoled with President Muhammadu Buhari on the death of his Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari.

In a statement on Saturday by his media adviser, Valentine Obienyem, Obi prayed that God would grant Kyari’s soul eternal rest.

The former vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) also sympathised with the family of the late Chief of Staff and urged them to take the loss as the will of God.

He prayed that God would grant them the needed strength and comfort to bear the loss.

Obi also prayed for the repose of others who have died of coronavirus, and divine healing hands to touch and clear the world of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He urged Nigerians to continue to abide by regulations and protocols stipulated by the government and global health agencies to stay safe from coronavirus infection.

Peter Obi Backs Buhari, Says Lockdown Extension Is Important And Necessary

The Vice-Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Mr Peter Obi.

 

Former Vice Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Peter Obi, has backed President Muhammadu’s extension of the lockdown order aimed at curtailing COVID-19 in the country.

Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Wednesday, he also commended efforts made by the Federal Government and respective state governments as well as the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for their various efforts.

“For me the extension of two weeks is necessary and important. It is necessary and important because we don’t have the resources to fight the pandemic if it escalates and spreads.

“The only thing we have now is containment. But in doing so, it is critical we look at ways we can manage this process effectively,” he said.

According to him, the Federal Government should create more testing centres that will help the NCDC detect more COVID-19 cases in the country.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: UNDP Ships 50 Ventilators, Personal Protective Equipment To Nigeria

When comparing Nigeria’s testing ability to other African countries, he said: “Right now, our testing process is very low compared to our pairs even in Africa.”

While admitting that there is hunger in the land, the PDP chieftain therefore asked the President Buhari administration to act fast in order to cushion the effect of the lockdown.

Part of the measures he explained is for the Federal Government to give each state N10bn each to tackle the COVID-19 lockdown in the country.

Obi’s comment come two days after President Buhari extended the restriction of movement in Lagos and Ogun States, as well as the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

In his nationwide broadcast on Monday, the President announced the extension of the lockdown by another two weeks.

Peter Obi Blames Nigeria’s Security Challenges On Poor Economy

The Vice-Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Mr Peter Obi has decried the security situation in the country.

 

The Vice-Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, Mr Peter Obi has blamed the nation’s security challenges on the poor economy.

Obi, who was a guest on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, faulted the Federal Government for its policies that have contributed to the state of the economy.

“Apart from the armed bandits which we all know are killing everybody everywhere, we have also the upsurge in all forms of criminalities whether it is kidnapping, robbery, all sorts of crimes are on the increase.

“And that also is what you need to deal with. How do you tackle it? Economy. If you have 98 million people, the consequence is that maybe there are several million who do not know where the next meal will come from,” he said.

Speaker further, Obi said Nigeria has the highest number of poor people in the world, more than China and India.

He also decried the unemployment situation in the country, stressing that the gradual collapse of the economy is to be blamed.

READ ALSO: Insecurity: Situation In Northeast Is Getting Worse – Senator Ndume

Reacting to the calls for the sack of the nation’s service chiefs, Obi believes doing so will not solve the numerous security threats the country grapple with.

“If I look at people saying the Inspector General of Police should go, I have seen several IGP and I have worked with them.

“This particular one, I have not met him but I can tell you that he has conducted himself in what I call a decent manner, especially in the way he speaks,” he said.

Obi’s comments follow that of a lawmaker representing Borno South Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Senator Ali Ndume who decried the situation in the Northeast saying it is getting worse by the day.

Ndume had while speaking on Sunday Politics, regretted that the resurgence of the Boko Haram /Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) keeps increasing.

No Government Exists Without Security Of Lives And Property, Says Peter Obi

 

The former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, has said that no government exists without securing the lives and properties of the citizens.

Mr. Obi stated this on Tuesday while speaking at The Platform, a programme by the Covenant Christian Centre to mark Nigeria’s 59th Independence Day.

He said Nigeria needs to do something very quickly and drastically on its present security situation.

“The number one job of any government in any society is to provide security for lives and properties.

“If you cannot do that then the government does not exist.”

Mr Obi explained that one of the major things needed in the country to grow its economy is an investment but questioned how secured the nation is for investors.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Lacks Mental Discipline To Execute Plans, Says Bismarck Rewane

He noted that security is a fundamental factor that attracts foreign investors.

According to Mr Obi, there are major factors affecting the growth of the nation which is security, education and Our economy (with emphasis on solving the current underemployment and unemployment situation)

He said Nigeria is borrowing and not impacting on the development of the country.

“We are borrowing but it is not impacting our growth. One of the crises we face as a country is the high level of our debt accumulation.

“Today Nigeria’s debt is about 28 trillion dollars. Our debt to GDP is about 25%. Singapore’s debt to GDP is 100%. In Singapore, you can only borrow for capital projects that will pay itself back.

“Nigeria’s unemployment rate is over 25%,  global life expectancy is 75 years, while for Nigeria, it is 54 years.

“Nigeria is the only country where you have a low literacy rate of 51% and this is caused by the nonchalant attitude towards our educational system”.

Mr Obi further stated that Nigeria is the home of the highest number of poor people on Earth, and in every minute, six Nigerians fall into poverty.

He said investors need peace to enjoy their dividends. Nobody is going to invest in an unsecured place no matter how huge the profit seems.

“Our ten years budget in education is not up to South African’s one year budget in education

Education

A growing economy invests at least 4% to 5% of the GDP in education.

Education is not an expense, it is an investment. The more you invest in education, the better your society.

The Chinese annual budget for education is 580 billion dollars.

In the last 10 years, Nigeria has budgeted about $4.5bn for education, less than the amount South Africa spends annually on its education.

If the money spent on subsidy was invested in education and health, it would have impacted positively in our economy at large.

Unemployment

Talks about the economy is incomplete without addressing the issue of employment and unemployment.

Unemployment and under-employment are the greatest contributors to the challenges to the growth of our economy. When people don’t have jobs, we will have terrorists and criminals in society.

‘A Great Patriot’: Atiku, Saraki, Others Celebrate Peter Obi

Presidential election: Why Atiku Is Challenging Buhari’s Victory – Obi
File: (L-R) Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar.

 

 

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has congratulated his running mate in the 2019 general elections, Mr Peter Obi, on his birthday.

As the former Anambra State governor turned 58 on Friday, Atiku and former Senate President Bukola Saraki, as well as other leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) took to Twitter to praise him.

Others who sent their goodwill messages to the former governor include Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Senator Ben Murray-Bruce, and Senator Uche Ekwunife.

READ ALSO: PDP’s Star Witness, Chidoka Testifies At Presidential Election Tribunal

Responding to Atiku’s tweet, Obi thanked the PDP presidential candidate who he described as “one of the most hardworking men”.

Read the tweets below:

@atiku. You are one of the most hardworking men I know and I am proud to be your right hand man in this project to get Nigeria working again. -PO https://t.co/5VdLWo02Eo

— Peter Obi (@PeterObi) July 19, 2019