Bill Gates, worldâ€™s second richest man, has said the federal governmentâ€™s investments in young people, especially in areas of health and education, is not good enough.
He said this in an interview with CNN.
The co-chairman of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation reiterated the comments he made when he spoke at the expanded National Economic Council (NEC) meeting on Thursday.
At the meeting which was presided over by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, Gates had said the execution priorities of the economic recovery and growth plan do not reflect the true needs of Nigerians.
â€œThe Nigerian governmentâ€™s economic recovery and growth plan identify investing in our people as one of three strategic objectives. But the execution priorities donâ€™t fully reflect peopleâ€™s needs, prioritising physical capital over human capital,â€ he had said.
â€œPeople without roads, ports, and factories canâ€™t flourish. And roads, ports and factories without skilled workers to build and manage them canâ€™t sustain an economy.â€
The Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir el-Rufai, who was at the meeting, had defended the federal government, saying Gatesâ€™ comment was incorrect.
But in the chat with CNN, the billionaire businessman defended his criticism of the Nigerian government.
He said Nigeriaovernment gets health and education right.
â€œAs a partner in Nigeria, I am saying the current plan is inadequate. Nigeria has all these young people and the current quality and quantity of investment in these young generations; in health and education just isnâ€™t good enough. So, I was very direct,â€ he told CNN.
â€œIf they can get health and education right, they will be an engine of growth not just for themselves but for all of Africa.â€