By Our Editor
Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, insisted on Sunday that solving the current economic crisis was more important than political permutations geared towards 2023.
He made the statement during an appearance on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics anchored by Seun Okinbaloye monitored by Eagle Eye Watch.
The PDP vice-presidential candidate declined commenting on current political events in the country like the defection of Ebonyi State governor Dave Umahi to APC, preferring to comment on the country,s economic quagmire.
According to Obi, who was the Peoples Democratic Party’s vice-presidential candidate in 2019, the 2023 elections have no impact on people’s current livelihoods, which has been put in dire circumstances by the coronavirus pandemic.
He also criticized President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration for not adequately preparing the country for the impact of the pandemic.
“Every other country is discussing the recession and how to pull their people out of poverty,” he said. “So what we should do now is to concentrate on the monetary and fiscal policies to start pulling people out of poverty.
“If you see what happened with recent protests, you could see that we are heading into a problem. And I want our energy to be concentrated in that problem. The politicians, the class where I belong, should do more seriously, across party lines, to be able to arrest the situation before it gets out of hand.
“For me, it is in discussing how do we put food on people’s table. Elections will come and we can see how to select the best. But let’s deal with the recession we have just entered before 2023.”
Obi slammed the current administration over its propensity to borrow for consumption rather for production and inability to cut government expenses.
“The cost of governance is not acceptable,” he said. “There is too much waste.
“This recession is going to be worst than in 2016 because the monies we borrowed then were not properly invested.
“What we need now is to go into a vigorous regime of formulating implementable and measurable monetary and fiscal policies to drive ourselves out of the present situation.”
According to Obi, Nigerian leaders now “need to take very difficult decisions” if they are to turn the tide and put the economy back on the track of positive growth.
The former Anambra State governor also took a swipe on the country,s poor handling of the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises in Nigeria. Adding that “they are currently on a life support”.He postulated that other emerging nations in the continent like South Africa are putting more monies into their economy in order to cushion the effect of the pandemic in their countries.