Lai Mohammed Says Buhari Steering Nigeria To Right Direction 

Yemisi Izuora

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said

in spite of the huge challenges inherited by the current

Administration, President Muhammadu Buhari has steered the country in

the right direction and returned the economy to the path of

sustainable growth.

The Minister made the remarks in Abuja on Friday when he received a

delegation from the African Union Development Agency-New Partnership

for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD), which is in the country for the

second peer review.

“We came into government in 2015 and by the time we came to

government, three things happened, the impact of which we did not

know. The first is that by the time we assumed office in 2015, a huge

part of the North East was under the effective occupation of Boko


“When we came in in 2015, the economy had virtually collapsed. Oil

prices crashed from a high of about $120 per barrel to about $28 a

barrel. Production went from about 2.1 million barrels per day to

about half a million barrels a day. These were the challenges we faced

on day one when we came in,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed therefore urged the AUDA-NEPAD to always consider the

peculiar challenges of a country while making conclusions on the

governance structure for the peer review.

“While we can have some basic tenets of governance, governance is a

bit peculiar to the locality, and the kind of challenges we face will

determine to a large extent the mechanism we are going to use to

resolve them.

“I look at Nigeria as an extremely interesting project, especially in

the last six years. I think the kind of challenges we faced as a

government coming in in 2015 till today will challenge the most

resourceful persons,” he said.

The Minister hailed the governance style of President Buhari which, he

said, is driven by experience, wisdom, tolerance, patience and listening to all

shades of opinion in his effort to chart a new course for the country

that has been plagued by numerous challenges.

While speaking on the economy, he said the President has diversified

the economy as oil is no longer the driving force behind economic


“In the area of economy, I am proud to say that we are not just in the

process of diversifying the economy, we have diversified our economy

because the last report (of the National Bureau of Statistics) showed

that while the non-oil economy did very well, the oil-related economy

did poorly.

“That after two quarters of recession, we were able to record 5.01%

growth in GDP was not at all based on the oil economy but on the

non-oil economy,” Alhaji Mohammed said.

He said the Federal Government has scaled up the fight against

insurgency, banditry, kidnapping and other forms of criminality in the


The Minister also highlighted the contributions of the Creative

Industry to the growth of the economy, saying apart from agriculture,

the sector creates the highest number of jobs, especially for women

and the youth.

He also commended Mr. President’s foresight in the fight against

COVID-19, and disclosed that Nigeria is targeting about 90 million

doses of COVID-19 vaccine by the end of the year.

In her remarks, the National Coordinator of NEPAD, Princess Gloria

Akobundu, said the AU Development Agency is in the country to assess

the implementation of the National Programme of Action arising from

the first peer review conducted in 2008.

She said so far, Nigeria has consolidated democracy, scaled up the

provision of infrastructure and is in the process of attaining

self-sufficiency in food production through massive investment in


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