Political Economist and former presidential candidate, Prof. Pat Utomi, has said the current economic recession would have been avoided by the Federal Government, if proper policy choices were made, noting that the crash in oil prices was not enough to have resulted in recession.
Prof Utomi, who said this, yesterday, in Lagos at the 2016 Men Summit convened by the Catholic Men Organisation of the Holy Family Catholic Church, FESTAC Town, said if government had borrowed money against its assets, devalued early and applied intelligent leadership, Nigeria would not have been at a crossroad now.
He also stressed that the collapse in oil prices ought not to have plunged the country into crisis, if the authorities had acted rightly.
Taking a retrospective look at most factors that led to recession in Nigeria, he noted that the attitude of the present government, in the face of the dwindling oil prices, scared investors away from the country.
Meanwhile, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has assured the public that the economic recession will soon be over, given the strategic measures being put in place by the monetary and fiscal authorities to turn the economy around.
Speaking during an interactive session with journalists at the weekend, Emefiele stated emphatically that the “worst is over”, and that the Nigerian economy was already on the path of recovery.
The governor equally reiterated his call for the Federal Government to partially sell some of its oil joint venture assets, saying that the proceeds raised from the sale would go a long way in boosting Nigeria’s foreign reserves and reflating the economy through infrastructure projects.
He expressed optimism that the liberalisation of the foreign exchange (FX) market was starting to pay off, revealing that the country had recorded $1 billion capital inflows from foreign investors since the market took off almost three months ago.