Gov.Mbah Identifies Major Setbacks To Nigeria’s Economic Development

Peter Mbah, governor of Enugu says only radical thinking and a creative approach to governance could stimulate rapid economic development in Nigeria.

Mbah said this became necessary given the nation’s brand of presidential federalism which excessively vests the nation’s revenues in the centre, thereby hindering bold social and economic development.

“In a statement on Sunday by Uche Anichukwu, the governor’s s senior special assistant on external relations, the governor
made the call in a public lecture entitled “Enugu State, Nigeria: New Political Leadership; Bold Economic Vision – Spotlight on the Health and Education Strategies” which he delivered at the London School of Economics (LSE)

Mbah, according to the statement, maintained that the difficult times in Nigeria required bold and unusual solutions that come from thinking outside the box.”

He, however, commended the transfer of railways and power from the exclusive to concurrent list to enable the states to play a role in those sectors and lauded the ongoing discussions and predisposition of the President Bola Tinubu administration towards the devolution of more powers to the federating units.

“The choice of a presidential system might have been well-informed, shaped by the inherent benefits of federalism in other countries with population as vast and diverse as ours.

“But our presidential federalism has bred a system where revenue is excessively domiciled at the centre rather than in the states or regions,” he said.

“Such hypothetical scenario can only breed dire economic prospects for the family and should ordinarily push its hard-pressed members to take some swift and critical actions to improve their precarious financial state.

“The challenge, as we have seen, is finding the will and having the capacity to do so”.

“This briefly summarizes our turnaround tale in Enugu State in roughly nine months.

“The single boldest projection that encapsulates what we intend to accomplish is our target to grow the economy of Enugu State seven-fold.

“Simply put, our vision is to grow the state’s GDP from $4.4bn – that we met – to at least $30bn in the next four to eight years.

“Another bold plan is the commitment to attain a zero per cent poverty headcount index in Enugu State,”

The governor emphasised the importance of visionary leaders who can translate dreams into reality, despite the widespread demand for leaders with transcendental values.

Mbah added that the comprehensive plan to turn the state’s fortunes around included the administration’s significant investments in the fields of agriculture, water, health, and education in addition to security.

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