The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, on Monday said the All Progressives Congress government of President Muhammadu Buhari was not against restructuring.
Ngige, who spoke with newsmen in Awka, the Anambra State capital, said the Buhari administration had already begun the restructuring process with the nation’s economy.
He said the impact might not be felt immediately but with time, Nigerians would all smile because of the ongoing restructuring by the APC administration.
He said, “Nigerians have positively changed their way of doing things for the better and have become more prudent and judicious in their spending pattern.”
The minister assured Nigerians that Buhari would look into the political restructuring of the country at the appropriate time.
“It’s one after the other. After economic restructuring to reposition the economy of this country, the Buhari administration will embark on the political restructuring and will set the modalities for the exercise,” he said.
Asked whether the restructuring would revisit the 2014 National Conference report, Ngige said, “When we get there, we shall address the issues.”
The minister called on various agitation groups in the country to sheathe their swords, noting that violence would not do anybody any good.
“Militancy and agitations are not the answer to resolving Nigeria’s myriads of problems, which the Buhari administration didn’t create in the first place.
“What is required is for all to support this administration to meet its set goals for the development and transformation of all sections of the country,” Ngige said.
Meanwhile, amidst growing criticisms of President Buhari’s economic policies, the APC has urged the President to remain focused.
The governing party gave this advice in Abuja, on Monday.
The APC said the advice was in response to what it described as the “orchestrated and insensitive” comments by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party on the economy.
The PDP had in a statement chided the Buhari-led APC administration for dissipating energy on blaming the immediate past administration instead of concentrating on solving Nigeria’s economic problems.
The National Secretary of the APC, Mai Mala Buni, who conveyed the party’s position in a statement, said, President Buhari should remain focused in his bid to restore Nigeria’s economic growth.”
Buni said, “In spite of the PDP’s orchestrated and feeble attempts to blackmail the current administration and twist facts, the reality remains that the prevailing socio-economic hardship being faced by Nigerians is a direct consequence of the mismanagement of the economy and unprecedented looting of the country’s commonwealth perpetrated under its watch.
“The PDP’s attempt to turn truth on its head is fraudulent, insensitive and an insult to Nigerians. For the umpteenth time, the PDP must own up to its transgressions and apologise to Nigerians.
“Going forward, the urgent task before the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration is to restore the country’s battered economy and health. Innovative means are being employed to achieve this in the quickest possible time.”
The APC said Nigerians should rest assured that the Buhari administration had the strong political will and commitment to revive the economy and tackle the nation’s current challenges.
This, it said, would be achieved through suitable and well thought-out economic policies, fiscal discipline and socio-political reforms.
According to the party, the administration also remains committed to the diversification of the country’s economy which has been placed as top on the priority list.
“To this end, President Buhari is aggressively formulating and implementing policies aimed at diversifying Nigeria’s economy from oil to other sectors, such as agriculture, mining and manufacturing.” Buni said.
The APC equally assured Nigerians that the administration would pull the country out of the present hardship.
It, however, appealed for the support, cooperation, patience and prayers of Nigerians, to enable the administration ensure that it takes the country to its deserved destination.
Courtesy: The PUNCH. By John Alechenu and Tony Okafor