Minister of National Planning, Dr. Shamsudeen Usman has challenged critics of the federal government to present figures that show that the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan is not leading the country to self-sufficiency.
The Minister made this known during his presentation at the Mid Term Report on Transformation Agenda of the administration on Wednesday.
“You cannot deny the savings from the agricultural revolution that has taken place from doing away with the corrupt and inefficient fertilizer distribution system. You cannot deny the improvement of such crops as cassava, wheat, rice that are leading Nigeria towards self-sufficiency,” he said.
He therefore challenged critics “to come up with your own figures and contest it, that is where the debate should be now”.
Mr Usman, who referred to such critics as “those who don’t understand the macroeconomics of the country” urged them to either learn or sheathe their swords, as he claimed that Nigeria is the biggest recipient of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) in Africa, averaging about $7.5 billion in the last two years.
He argued that economists like himself tend to focus on the big picture like the macro economy, GDP growth, inflation, foreign reserve but agreed that sometimes people “don’t just understand these figures or sometimes they don’t believe them”.
Usman also praised President Jonathan for being the only president in the 50 year history of Nigeria to have produced a document detailing his plans for the country on the day of his inauguration as President.
He further eulogised the President for coming up with a Mid Term Report on his performance which according to the Minister, is another first in the country’s post independence history.