In terms of development, the outgoing year 2017 can best be described as a mixture of the positive and negative, many believe. Despite the huge N7.4 trillion budget of ‘growth and hope’ which is the highest so far in the nation’s history, and despite the federal government’s various efforts, development has not percolated to the grassroots level fully, with hunger, poverty and unemployment still rife. In your own view, how can development best be improved in 2018?
* Our rather overwhelming challenges in 2017 were memorably full of turbulence here and there economically, socially and otherwise. In 2018 we must learn from our past mistakes and misfortunes. This government hasn’t done too badly considering the enormous and complex challenges on ground. In 2018 we must focus on electricity improvement, poverty reduction, food security, research, insecurity, infrastructure etc.
– Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos State
* The tips for development in 2018 are as numerous as Nigerians are numerous. However, the top tips include early passage of the 2018 Appropriation bill. This will help ‘fast-track’ budget implementation and ensure the country exceeds the 20 per cent 2017 performance. And, say, who is afraid of counting Nigerians? The Federal Government should ensure we have a census next year. Let’s know how many Nigerians there are. There’s leftover in the Excess Crude Account even after the controversial $1billion withdrawal. It should be used for census. God bless Nigeria!
– Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R., Apo, Abuja
* Let the government be serious about governance in 2018 in order to please Nigerians, because our expectation is high to get good result from them.
– Mrs. Ijeoma Nnorom, Lagos State
* Development can best be improved in 2018, if Nigerians unite, otherwise our suffering would be in vain. The disunity is causing havoc from the ruling party to the opposition party the PDP. Imagine the opposition party that said they have realised their mistake and have united to take power come 2019. What is happening right away? We shouldn’t deceive ourselves. There must be unity before peace then finally love for our country before any development success. The way our leaders are tearing each other apart shows we have a long way to go.
– Hon. Babale Maiungwa, U/Romi, Kaduna State
* Reconstruction in all of us, Nigerians; physically, mentally, socially, in all areas of our lives.
– Miss Sylvia Arinze, Enugu, Enugu State
* Development can be improved on in 2018 if the federal government follows the Lagos example. Governance is not rocket science; the president should release funds to the various ministries as at when due and stop telling us that or giving us the impression that the country is broke.
– Mr. Babatunde Aremu, Lagos State
* The government should focus on jobs creation to end insecurity and other vices in the country come 20l8 and also on infrastructural development nationwide. Agriculture should be given priority in 20l8 by giving farmers soft loans to cultivate food for the general populace instead of importing some substandard food items into the country. I believe 20l8 is going to be a better year in Nigeria because the government is correcting their past mistakes so we can move forward.
– Mr. Gordon Chika Nnorom, Public Commentator, Umukabia, Abia State
* Government policies must drive economic growth through entrepreneurship and self-employment particularly at the grassroots. Nigerians are hardworking people and need the right environment and opportunities to thrive first. This should also include infrastructural development.
– Ms Nkeiruka Abanna, Lagos State
* With the 2017 budget largely unimplemented, Nigerians are holding to the President’s promise to implement all his pledges as the year remains few days to go. Marketing Boards should be introduced to check that the prices of food items are reduced to affordable levels for the common man in the next fiscal year. Security should be beefed up nationwide to avoid crime. The economy is biting citizens harshly in the current administration and this needs swift attention. Power supply, roads, employment should also be tackled. Development will only be possible if leaders lead by example.
– Mr. Dogo Stephen, Kaduna State
* With a visionless leadership at the centre there can hardly be any positive development come 2018. At the individual level hard work should be the watchword.
– Barrister DYN Maigari, Abuja
* In 2018, governments across all tiers should implement more capital projects to ensure increased employment generation, and also inject even more funds in the agricultural sector, which is the largest employment-generating sector and capable of generating more revenue. Also, the federal government must jail more sacred cows within and outside government in 2018, in order to set the right example in the fight against corruption and deter potential looters.
– Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State
* In the year 2017 most Nigerian citizens lived miserable lives where food was inadequate, victims of security and diseases were challenges and there were unpaid salaries for the civil servants, all of which affect the populace. With the coming year of 2018, we hope that Nigerians’ suffering will stop; a more prosperous year ahead with the prompt release and the implementation of 2018 budgets. There should be introduction of various policies that will ease doing of business, economic growth, more employment generation, partnership with international countries, business opportunities, improved economic, political, and social well-being, policy intervention on growth, increase in productivity, market oriented development, which will help rise in Gross Domestic Product. There should also be increase in production, application of modern scientific and technical knowledge, timely redistribution of resources that will power industrial revolution, improve social services such as healthcare, safe drinking water, electricity distribution, good roads, equal distribution of income, increase in social services across communities in Nigeria, reduction of poverty, educational development, price stability, improvement in fiscal and trade policies, regulation of financial institutions, programmes and services, affordable housing, crime preventions, marketing, small business development, real estate and technology transfer.
– Mr. Michael Adedotun Oke, Founder, Adedotun Oke Foundation, Abuja
* Although a whopping N7.4 trillion was budgeted for 2017 and a lot was also accomplished in various sectors of the economy, perennial petrol scarcity, unemployment, poverty, insurgency, inflation, and food insecurity e.t.c. are real challenges that are begging for urgent attention. So far government’s body language shows that 2018 is our year of hope. All we need is unity, patriotism, love e.t.c. God bless Nigeria.
– Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos State
Top tip: Tackle unemployment and poverty
Second: Implement vital capital projects
Third: Improve power supply, security
Radical tip: Jail more sacred cows!
Total no of respondents: 13
Highest location: Lagos (6)
Next Week: Is Full Deregulation the Best Option?
Although the Federal Government has embraced some partial deregulation in the oil industry and power sector, many eminent citizens have called for full deregulation of both sectors in a bid to boost power supply and also ensure a level and more effective playing filed in the oil sector to eliminate the yearly fuel scarcity and untold hardship on Nigerians. From your viewpoint, can full deregulation solve Nigeria’s power and oil industry challenges in 2018?
Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (December 28 & Monday, January 1) to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, AND firstname.lastname@example.org. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, January 4, 2018