President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential parley with the senior executive course no 38 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPPS) has revealed that he almost quit as President when he realized how difficult running the country would be with the fall in the price of crude oil.
The President said that because of the fall in the price of crude oil which is the live wire of the economy, 27 states in the country could not pay salaries at the time he resumed office.
“For 16 years and consecutive government’s of the other party and you know that there was unprecedented revenue realised, the oil projection which can be verified was 2.1 million barrels per day. From 1999-2015 the average cost of each Nigerian barrel of oil was $100 per barrel.”
“When we came it fell to less than $30 per barrel and is now it is between 40 and 50. Actually I felt like absconding because 27 out of 36 states in Nigeria cannot pay salaries and we know they have no other source than to depend on salaries.”
“And I asked any savings? I was told there was no savings, And I asked what have you done on agriculture, power, rails, roads. Nothing. You know more than I do because you move around. I have not been moving around since after elections but you do, how many of the Trunk A roads are still good enough?”
“How many power do we have although there are some elements of sabotage. I was told the money was used to import food and fuel. I didn’t believe the answer and I still don’t believe it.”
“Until now substantial number of people in the East eat garri and groundnut, in the West pounded yam, cassava, vegetables, in the north tuwo which is made from any of the grains, millet, sorghum. They eat it in the night and warm it in the morning and eat it and take fura De nunu in the afternoon. How many of those people can afford foreign food?”
The President commended the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPPS) for her contribution to his administration.
“I am very pleased that the Participants, through the able leadership of the National Institute of Management and the faculty members, have taken the task seriously, as is evident in the report presented. I congratulate you for painstakingly committing your time and energy to produce such a valuable policy-oriented report that will guide this administration.”
“I have looked forward to receiving this report because it touches on one of the fundamental problems confronting our nation. The Report comes at a time when our economy is experiencing a downturn and all efforts are being made by this administration to get our country moving again”