By Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has expressed disappointment as Ghana overtook Nigeria as the top recipient of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
The former vice-president said that sadly, this unfortunate economic indicator has escaped the attention of the current administration, who are more interested in hounding real and imagined opponents, like the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and many legislators, than in addressing the rapid economic decline Nigeria is witnessing under their watch.
Atiku, in a statement he personally signed Wednesday, said that for all the years that the PDP governed Nigeria, including the eight years of which he was vice-president, Nigeria always set the pace for Africa in terms of foreign direct investment and became the number one recipient of FDI in Africa in 2013 under a PDP administration.
He added that in that same year, Nigeria also became Africa’s largest economy, under PDP’s leadership.
Atiku stated: “It is with a very heavy heart that I received the news that the Republic of Ghana has overtaken our dear nation as West Africa’s largest recipient of foreign direct investment.
“As a businessman and employer of labour, I am disappointed that a nation with 15% of our population has outperformed us in this area. This is an economic emergency that must be addressed.
“I foresaw this happening, which is why I was in the United States last week to get foreign investors who have been divesting from Nigeria, to return their investments. Prior to my US trip, I had undertaken similar missions in Europe and the Orient.
“It is of particular importance to understand why Nigeria has become an economic pariah under the present administration leading to us becoming the world headquarters for extreme poverty. When you have a leader who habitually travels abroad to de-market his own nation and its economy, things like this are bound to happen.
“It is further exacerbated when that same leader stubbornly blames his predecessors for problems he caused, while at the same time taking credit for achievements and progress initiated and delivered by those same leaders he makes a habit of denigrating.”
The former vice-president said that the economic challenges would bow only to proper agenda, stressing that propaganda has no effect on them and would only make a bad situation worse, as we see today.
According to him, “Therefore, I solemnly declare to Nigerians, that if I am elected president on February 16, 2019, I will be Nigeria’s Chief Marketing Officer, and will never speak ill of our economy, our polity and our youths. My utterances, both at home and abroad, will be used to lift Nigeria’s economy because Atiku means JOBS- Jobs, Opportunity, Being United and Security and it is time to get Nigeria working sgain.”
He assured all Nigerians that if elected, he would regain the country’s status as Africa’s top recipient of FDI.