Chris Steven, Abuja
A group under the aegis of South-East South-South Professionals has advised the Federal Government on the need to take an holistic review of the economy,in order to device self sustaining mechanism in the remaining lifespan of the current administration.
The group also said it would not be out of place if President Muhammadu Buhari at this precarious stage, declare a state of emergency on the economy.
President of the association, Emeka Ugwu-Oju, made the call when he led other members on a visit to the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa on Thursday,in Abuja.
“Currently the Nigerian economy is in shambles, we strongly suggest that Mr. President should as a matter of urgency and in consultation with the National Assembly declare a three-year state of emergency on the economy.
“We are not leaning on any political block whether APC or PDP to give this advise, economic issues is something that is non-partisan, our economy is in bad shape and the earlier people realise the better for all.
“Our current disposition as citizens seems like it is something that will go away soon. Imagine we were having $100 a barrel and now we might not have up to $50 a barrel in the next three years this is our greatest concerns.
“This issue of fuel scarcity is a typical example of what is playing out, we never envisaged it, and now we have to get every citizen on a common course,not a question of Mr. Bad or Mr. Good, the total leadership has to realise that all Nigerians have to come together, we have to roll up our sleeves so that everyone can play a role in salvaging the country.
“Talks about making sacrifice should not just be sacrosanct to the poor, I see no reason why any minister, governor or whoever should be traveling outside economy class, we have to depict that things are bad. You can’t tell me things are bad and I see you drinking champagne or flying first class or private jet, same goes for the private sector.
“These were the things we tried to explain to the Vice President. When we met with him today. We had a good engagement and as you know, he is very intelligent, very hard working, very cerebral and we are happy he is the Vice President of this country,”he said
According to him, the Vice President has accepted to be the special guest of honour at the second South-South South-East Forum billed for April 28 to 29.
He said: “We are planning a second South-South South-East Forum on April 28-29th and we took the opportunity to formally invite the VP to be the special guest of honour which he gladly accepted.
“We talked on the state of the economy, even though we may be perceived at a geo-political group we do have a pan-Nigerian outlook. We try to interface south-west professionals and others from other geo-political zones on how we can get the Nigerian economy out of the woods.
He said that the group believed that each zone has something to bring to the table and there was no need to wait for the federal government to do everything for the zones.
“We the professionals want to see what we can bring to the table, we from the south-south south east we are bringing the energy corridor project to the table and we can say we have the most comparative advantage on that.” He stated