President Goodluck Jonathan and the revival of Nigerian economy in the 21st century

by Benjamin Ogbebulu

Political theorists , academicians and progressive Nigerians could argue that the rather high sounding phrase “post–war reconstruction and development” which has eluded Nigeria since the country got her independence on 1st October, 1960 is possible where the country has a patriotic and visionary leader in the 21st century global and domestic politics of Nigeria.

As it is with any war, the effects of Nigerian civil war in 1967 was not only harrowing in experience, extremely disturbing in nature but costly both in human and natural ramifications. Today, Nigeria as a nation is realistically addressing her political –economic problems and any attempts by retrogressive forces both within and outside the country to destabilise the country should be vehemently and utterly discouraged by well-meaning patriotic Nigerians both at home and abroad.

As one of the optimist Nigerians who believe that no matter the political –economic hiccups facing the country today, Nigeria under a visionary leader of president Goodluck Jonathan’s mass –oriented policies and programs are progressively re-shaping the country . With the government quest of industrialising and developing the country , its industrial policy and incentives working , given enough time, the development which has eluded the country will become a thing of the past.

Since the ugly war , governments and good people of Nigeria has been yearning for a rapid development but unfortunately much have not been achieved in terms of provision of social amenities and sustainable economic growth but today, there has been improvement in the provision of physical infrastructure and better result with our GDP [ economic growth] .However, more still need to be done and with president Goodluck political sagacity and immense experience , Nigeria will develop.

President Goodluck Jonathan’s economic blue-print for industrialisation is crucial to the development of Nigeria and this has been commended by well meaning progressive Nigerians both at home and abroad. Also, the recent World Bank report which states that with the present fiscal economic policy of the government if well sustained, will see an improved economic growth in 2014. Also, remarks made recently by respectable Nigerian investors like Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Chairman Aliko Dangote group of companies, commended President Goodluck Jonathan domestic economic policy which in-spite of challenges facing the country, has given economic leeway for both indigenous and foreign investors to invest in Nigeria and boost the economic growth of the country ,this show how passionate president Goodluck Jonathan as a leader in revamping our economy.

President Goodluck Jonathan as a matter of economic utmost urgency and in-spite of all odds, is focusing in expanding the industrial sector of our economy by resuscitating our manufacturing sector , railway sector ,transport sector, reforming our Aviation sector and commissioning physical infrastructural projects like roads. The government is also, pushing ahead with its programme of import substitution to save the country foreign exchange [ prudent economic management] by blocking loop holes to earn more foreign exchange from export of oil and luring investors to invest in the country’s gas sector.

Private sector are encouraged by the government fiscal economic policy to create employment opportunities while well meaning Nigerians urged both the government and strikers for the interest of our students and nation , to reach an amicable agreement to resolve their differences . President Goodluck Jonathan has a good economic blueprint for the country with definite priorities and a coherent set of guidelines for sustained government action.

The Government so far, have employed some workable tools in pursuing its industrial policy which among include: [1] Industrial incentives for example , investing more in Agriculture and through banks, giving soft loans to farmers to enhance food production for internal consumption and export [ Foreign exchange] [2]Industrial promotion activities – promotion of investment possibilities among indigenous as well as foreign investors. [3] The provisions of funds for participation directly in industries [ MDGS] or indirectly through government agencies , and guaranteeing external loans for new industrial projects. [4] Government assistance to industries and investment in agro allied industry.

President Goodluck Jonathan in his quest to develop the country appreciates the fact that the greatest incentive which serve as the important stimulus to industrial development in Nigeria, is the large size of the internal Nigerian market compared with that of other African countries and some developed countries. The government industrial development initiatives include [ 1] Agriculture-based industries ,such as sugar plantations linked with sugar factories [ The Dangotes] , cassava plantations linked with factories to produce cassava chips and starch [ President Goodluck Cassava initiative] program, palm oil and rubber plantation program linked with as much processing as possible.

Government investment on Agriculture is highly welcome by Nigerians as it will not only create jobs for the people but also generates foreign income for the country.

However, for effective industrialisation and optimum development in Nigeria ,it is imperative that both the states and federal government must work together for the interest of Nigerians. As Nigeria celebrates its 53rd Anniversary on 1st October 2013, well –meaning and progressive Nigerians remembers the damage 1967 civil war and bad leadership had on Nigeria’ development up to 1999 when the country had its democratic government but today, the country with its democratic learning curve is marching on progressively under the visionary leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan.

Government priorities also include : petrochemical industry, integration and diversification of our Textiles industry, iron and steel mill industry and investment in power generation, transmission and distribution of electricity which has now been privatized by the government for regular supply of electricity, are all seen to be well thought through progressive policies of the government , with some now yielding positive results for the development of the country and with time , other sector within the economy will produce more positive results, create more jobs opportunities for our unemployed youths and enhanced the economic growth of our country. Nigerians both at home and in Diaspora are urged to shun any act/s that could derail our embryonic democracy and support the transformation agenda of president Goodluck Jonathan for total reformation of the country.

Long Live Federal Republic of Nigeria and may our expectations of a 21st century modern Nigeria under president Goodluck Jonathan becomes a reality.

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