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Innocent Cyril Okwuchukwu (@admin)
26 days ago

I Won’t Tolerate Underperformance, Tinubu Warns Ministers

Outlines 8 priority areas to revive ailing economy Tinubu Warns Ministers

President Bola Tinubu yesterday told the new ministers that the hopes and aspirations of 200 million fellow Nigerians rested on their daily actions and that he would not condone poor performance from any of them.

At the maiden federal executive council meeting he presided over at the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the president urged the ministers to look beyond their titles and offices and stay focused on the day-to-day task of their individual and collective contributions to the transformation of the economy for the betterment of Nigerians.

The council considered the “Roadmap for the economy” presented by the minister of finance and coordinating minister for the economy, Olawale Edun.

In a statement by presidential spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, Tinubu said he will relentlessly provide the focused leadership required to stop failure in its tracks so that sustainable progress can be achieved.

“We shall evolve a homegrown re-engineering of our finances, a reimagined stewardship of our resources, and we will let the economy work for the people of this country. There are so many things we can and will do. Yes, some cynics will say it is impossible. But in your own dictionary of service, everything is possible, and it must be possible,” the president said .

Emphasizing that anyone thinking that appointments are fixed-term appointments are mistaken, the President expressed confidence that the carefully selected cabinet members know that his government is a new one with a new approach and a new mandate to deliver for Nigeria without any lamentation or excuses.

“We have the talent. We have the level of intellectual capacity required to turn this country around. We will make sure that the country is on the right path to succeed on behalf of more than 200 million Nigerians who rely on us,” the President affirmed.

President Tinubu noted that the country would rely on the experience, skill, intellect, and networking of those who had been appointed to make headway in the challenging times, and failure would not be explained away on his watch.

“You and I know that expectations are high, and these are tough times. We must work hard and move ourselves to create a buoyant economy that will serve Nigeria. We have an employment rate that is unacceptable, and we are facing threats from climate change. In order to turn things around, you have been selected to perform your utmost best. Our policy implementation will reform the economy, ensure inclusive growth, and strengthen security for peace and prosperity. Without security, there can be no investment,” the President said.

Tinubu said he was humbled by the mandate God had given to him, and reminded his cabinet that he is only one man and that their innovative thinking to solve problems will shape his leadership as a president who listens.

“It is in your hands now. I am ready to listen and to cooperate. I am ready even to be corrected. Only God is perfect. You have been asked to fetch water from a dry well. The challenges are great, but we will deliver for Nigerians. I am happy to be the captain of this vehicle.

“It is a great commitment that you have made to the country. Since your inauguration as a minister, you have become a servant for the people, serving all of the people, all of the time,” he added.

The president also gave the Federal Executive Council (FEC) members marching orders to begin the process of reviving the economy in order to make life more bearable for citizens.

Speaking on the issue at the post-FEC press briefing, Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Olawale Edun said the council agreed that the economy is not where it should be.

He said FEC examined eight priority areas and identified targets to deliver in the next three years.

The priority areas included economic growth, healthcare, fighting corruption, food security, rule of law, security, ending poverty and job creation, the Minister said.

Edun affirmed that President Tinubu charged the ministers to roll out policies and programmes to turn around the economy.

He said: “First he congratulated everybody and emphasised the high expectations of Nigerians and he encouraged us to be bold and courageous and innovative and to act with urgency in delivering a better life to all Nigerians. Essentially we went through an exercise of looking at where things stood, regarding the economy, the growth rate, the exchange rate, inflation, unemployment and so on.

“The overriding conclusion is that we’re not where we should be and we also examined the President’s eight-point agenda, that is the eight priority areas for moving the Nigerian economy forward and for delivering to Nigerians and those are basically food security; ending poverty, economic growth and job creation, access to capital, particularly consumer credit, inclusivity in all its dimensions, particularly as regards youths and women, improving security, improving the playing field on which people and particularly companies operate, rule of law, and of course, fighting corruption.

“It is around those matrix that the plans and the targets of what will be delivered in the next three years or so were identified, discussed and imputes were given by various ministers and we’ll now go away with the marching order to refine further the targets in particular and within weeks to start rolling out policies and programmes to turn around the economy and make things better for all Nigerians. That really is the substance of what the discussions were all about.”

Also speaking at the Post-FEC press briefing, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Professor Ali Pate, explained that the most important element underlying all the efforts of government is the people, especially the nation’s youthful population.

He said President Tinubu’s vision, therefore, would focus on harnessing the human capital of the youthful population.

The President, he said, consequently gave the ministers a marching order as their jobs were already cut out for them.

“The President’s vision is that of economic growth, prosperity for all, ending poverty, I think the Coordinating Minister of the Economy laid out those important priorities, which were discussed in the Council Chambers today.

“One element that is key and underlying all of those efforts is the people. Nigeria’s most important asset is its people, its youthful population and the human capital that is bestowed in that youthful population. So Mr President’s vision includes the idea of harnessing the human capital of our youthful population, to achieve prosperity for everyone.

“To mobilise the social capital that is in our country, uniting us as a people, to drive this transformation that is his direction for the administration, that includes dealing with nutrition, food and we have the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security. Health, preventive diseases, but also quality of health, not only as an area that supports people to live healthier lives, but healthier people also drive economic growth. Education, to ensure that people are not left behind, so that the child of anyone can aspire to the highest levels, so that we’ll have an inclusive economy as the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister indicated.

“The poorest and the most vulnerable population – girls, women, children, disabled – are an important element in that human capital agenda of this administration. The bias is towards action so that we’ll get things done and he’s very clear that the President wants us to domesticate our efforts within our own national context, but also to be very practical in the interventions that we’ll make.

“With those marching orders, we now have our jobs cut out for us and we’ll continue to define, as the Coordinating Minister of the Economy indicated. The President has high expectations and he urges us to ensure the high expectations of Nigerians are met and I believe that the entire cabinet is enthused to follow the President’s directions and to start to deliver for Nigerians.”