‘Thoughts from a Wealthy Perspective’

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The book launch and review of Sam Egube’s ‘Thoughts from a Wealthy Perspective’ held in Lagos recently. The launch, which was well attended by politicians, captains of industry and academicians, had the likes of former Abia state governorship aspirant Mr. Alex Otti and Mr. Great Ogboru in attendance.

The non-fiction focuses on the creation of value to establish wealth. It is one that is set to challenge the many lop-sided thinking of the human mind. It seeks to address the numerous angles human minds approach to lay conclusions, judgments, standards and status quo on which society must revolve.

It is a book that makes you think ‘Why do I believe in what I believe?’ Is the saying “Que sera sera, what will be will be,” altogether correct? The author, Mr. Egube justifies his thoughts in five parts of the book.

The author demystifies the ideology of man’s very existence: why we are here, why the rich are rich and the poor, the way they are? The book proposes that the rich are so because they create value to become wealthy; relationships deliver to a man what he demands of it. He goes on to say, “Two people with same phone contacts will extract different values from the people in that contact list. What use is a contact list if it gives you no advantage or earns you no money? A network uncultivated for its value is useless.”

In a time when people find pleasure in fiddling with their phones or make unsolicited calls with expressions such as ‘I just want to hear your voice,’ one begins to ponder on the verity of this saying.

The book questions the intelligence of fighting corruption as a national strategy. In the writer’s view-point the war against corruption should be delegated to a body specialised in dealing with such vice. The onslaught against corruption should not be captured with national binoculars as the only focal strategy of the country at the expense of other burning economic issues. This stance adopted by the federal government has created an image in the minds of foreigners that the only problem faced by Nigerians is corruption.

As part of the problems assailing the nation, such as unfounded dogmas, extremism, bias, the nation has plunged into debilitating depths of man’s-inhumanity-to-man. Religious extremism has led to dramatic lynching of people from the other religious divide all in the name of blasphemy.

The book canvasses better leadership from clergymen of all faiths, knowing that followers are greatly influenced by the words and lifestyles of their leaders.

Politicians Seeking to Make Adeosun Sacrificial Lamb

On Wednesday, some senators at the Senate plenary, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rejig his cabinet, to move the country out of current economic recession.

Chief among them was Ike Ekweremadu, deputy senate president, and Dino Melaye, senator representing Kogi west, who both asked that Kemi Adeosun, minister of finance, and her budget and national planning counterpart, Udo Udoma, be redeployed or removed.

The senators argued that the duo had not been doing enough to drive the economy out of recession.

Shehu Sani, senator representing Kaduna central, however said the removal of Adeosun and Udoma, would not get Nigeria out of recession.

“We must cut interest rates, start diversification of the economy, empower small businesses so that they will be able to produce and export. The key to getting out of this is export of goods and services,” Sani said “Removing the Minister of Finance will not be able to get us out of this problem because this recession is not Nigeria’s alone. It is all countries that are dependent on oil revenue”.

In times of economic difficulty, it is not unusual to see politicians trying to make cheap political points, by seeming pro-people in their approach to facing the problems.

President Muhammadu Buhari does not share the sentiment of the senators seeking a reshuffling of his cabinet, as he emphasized in New York on Wednesday evening that his cabinet must not be distracted by the current lamentations around the country’s economic situation.

In an op-ed published on Bloomberg, ahead of the US-Africa business forum in New York, the president said the ministry of finance, led by Adeosun, had “released more than 400 billion naira for infrastructure spending — more than the total amount spent in 2015”.

He said Africa rising which is fast become a question, other than a fact, would become a surviving reality in Nigeria, in the months to come.

“Until a few years ago, Africa Rising was a dominant theme in conversations about the global economy. That enthusiasm has since cooled, so that in newsrooms and think tanks and conference panels, ‘Africa Rising!’ has given way to a more questioning ‘Africa Rising?’” Buhari wrote.

“While some of that pessimism may be justified, we do not have the luxury of distracting ourselves with lamentations about our current circumstances.”

“Since I signed the 2016 budget into law in May, Nigeria’s Ministry of Finance has released more than 400 billion naira for infrastructure spending — more than the total amount spent in 2015.”

He once again, reiterated his support for the low-interest borrowing plan, put together by Kemi Adeosun, minister of finance, and her team.

“In the face of dwindling oil revenues, we are turning to debt. We have begun raising a $1 billion Eurobond, our first in three years,” he said.

“We are also raising debt from the World Bank, the African Development Bank, the Chinese Ex-Im Bank and other development finance partners.”

The president said the current recession was driven by vandalisation in the Niger Delta region not the doing of himself or any member of his cabinet, adding that Nigeria will scale through.

“The journey ahead remains long and difficult. Our double-digit inflation, currency turmoil and downgraded ratings will not vanish overnight.

“We also know that the current recession is partly driven by the production outages in Nigeria’s Delta region, and we are confident that growth will accelerate as problems in that region are resolved.

“But the real story here is not the challenges, which are all too visible, but the opportunities. We have learned the necessary lessons. We will ensure that Nigeria does not slip back into a lazy and dangerous dependence on the price of crude oil.

“The months ahead will show not only that Nigeria is on the rise, but that this ‘Rising’ is real and lasting — one that touches not just the statistical databases, but the lives of the people who elected us to deliver positive change.”

 –Adamu lives in Kaduna