Nigeria must increase productivity to improve naira value — Experts


Nigeria must increase its productivity and change consumption patterns to shore up the value of naira.

This was among the consensus reached by experts at a one-day roundtable on national issues organised by Development Specs Academy in Abuja.

Speakers at the occasion included the convener, Dr Okey Ikechukwu, a former spokesperson for the Nigerian Army, Brigadier Sani Usman (retd.); Rev.Fr. George Ehusani, Prof Jim Unah, Dr. Amaechi Anakwue, Prof. Christopher Ogbogbo, Dr. Amara Albert, Dr. Hyeladi Haruna, Dr Amaechi Anakwue, among others.

Dr Ikechukwu noted that the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, had made several policy interventions to improve the value of the national currency, including via the Anchor Borrowers Programme, which was created and enhance farmers’ access to loans.

“This initiative alone has created millions of jobs, taken many youths off the crime path and rescued many local economies. Only economy-reflating and socially impactful efforts, as seen in such initiatives, in addition to consuming what we produce and producing what we consume, will give us the prospect of bringing up the value of the National Currency and keeping it up,” he said.

Brig Usman described as unacceptable, the level of insecurity in the country and called for more strategic efforts towards ensuring the release of citizens being held in captivity by terrorists. He also urged the government to prioritise the release of kidnapped victims including the remaining Chibok girls, Leah Sharibu, the Kaduna train victims and others.

“Government should be proactive in information dissemination about what it is doing concerning those in captivity in various parts of the country,” he said

A former secretary of the Catholic Secretariat in Nigeria, Rev Ehusani, called on youths to take advantage of their numerical strength to vote for competent Nigerians in the 2023 general election.

The roundtable with participants drawn from the civil society communities, youth-based organisations, youths in politics and social media influencers, among others, warned that the country could have a looming crisis if public universities were not opened. It also called for the promotion of vocational skills and innovative entrepreneurship and values reorientation for youths to create the right mindset that would enable them to function successfully in a 21st century world.

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