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Monday, 30 September 2013
Nigeria Is Not Broke-Jonathan Insists
President Goodluck Jonathan has reaffirmed the vibrancy of Nigeria’s economy while fielding questions from a select panel of journalists during the presidential media chat in Abuja.
Asked about the true state of the nation’s economy, the president said “sometimes people play politics with serious things”.
He added that “To say Nigeria is broke, there must be some parameters. To make that kind of statement is very unfortunate. We must be careful the statements we make. It doesn’t matter whether you like the face of the president or not.”
In terms of foreign direct investment coming into the Africa, the president said “more is coming into Nigeria”.
He said he was given the privilege to ring the closing bell at the New York Stock exchange due to the viable business environment of Nigeria.
He said over 50 per cent of those investing in the capital market would have removed their money from their various investments if Nigeria was bankrupt insisting that “anybody who says Nigeria is bankrupt is just playing politics with what he is not suppose to”.
“The main reason was the closure of the two pipelines in June which forced the sales of oil down and it does not mean that the country is broke, ” adding that the development affected monthly allocation to the state governments.
The President averred that even if the Federal Government fails to pay salaries as and when due does not imply that the country is broke, stressing that so many other factors could have been responsible.
The President said that the perception about Nigeria’s economy in the international community is totally positive as against local perception adding that during his recent visit to the United States where he addressed the United Nation, he was given a very rare opportunity to ring the bell on the floor of the American Stock Exchange. “The President of US, President Barack Obama told me that for you to have been allowed to ring the bell is indicative of the level of confidence investors have on the Nigerian economy”, the President said.
The journalists are Africa Independent Television’s Senami Ohiomokhare, Channels Television’s Gloria Ume-Ezeoke, Shehu Dada of the Capital Post Newspaper, Nosa Igeabor of Tell Magazine and Shola OShunkeye of The Sun Newspaper.