How GEJ caused the current economic crisis — Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, OBJ, said he anticipated the current economic crisis way back in 2014 and warned of its consequences.

OBJ said some of Goodluck Jonathan’s policies were anti-people stressing that those policies crippled the economy.

Obasanjo said he was “Shocked when the ban on importation of toothpick which we imposed in 1977 was lifted four years ago.”

OBJ also threw his weight behind President Buhari’s plan to sell of national assets.

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He however urged the Federal Government to spend less than the country was earning, fashion out ways to earn more revenue and borrow.

“For me, we have brought it on ourselves, we don’t have to wring our hands and say ‘where are we?

“In a simple layman’s language, the situation is that we are spending more than we are earning.

“We have not been able to save, so that we can go and take from what we have saved.

“If you are spending more than you are earning, you will have to spend less, you earn more and you borrow.

“For us, we are to do the three as quickly as possible, we must borrow and we must go to the people that will give us loan with reasonable interest.

“You may do it with the World Bank or the International Monetary Fund. I don’t say we must not go to them.

“When I was in government, I never say no to them, but don’t do their bidding.

“Out there, there is money but people will not part with their money unless you are doing the right thing.”

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“How can a nation seeking to rank among the best in the world continue like that?

“We must begin to do away with things that we can do without.

“I do not see why 48% of the NNPC cannot be privatized. I think the problem is in the coinage ‘selling of asset’ as if we want to throw out our inheritance.

“What we are actually doing by that is simply reorganizing.

“It should however be done transparently and let it actually go public and not to cabals, their relations and friends.

“This is always the fear of Nigerians when issues like this arise.”