Minister of special duties and intergovernmental affairs, Senator George Akume has called for the promotion of diversity that would grow and develop the Nigerian economy.
Akume, who made the call in a lead paper he presented at the inaugural partnership economy summit, in Abuja, noted that time has come for Nigerians and governments to become more visionary, innovative and entrepreneurial.
In a paper titled, “Unveiling the Framework of Multi-Stakeholders’ Partnership for Building an Inclusive Economy for Shared Prosperity in Nigeria”, the minister maintained that Nigerians must challenge their imagination and embark on actions that require a departure from the unpleasant past.
He said the framework of Partnership Economy Nigeria would elicit an administrative coordination (horizontal and vertical), with interactions among relevant MDAs of the national and state tiers of government to support simultaneous driving of economic empowerment in all the participating local government areas.
The minister pointed out that the present administration has matched words with actions, noting that in the agricultural sector, Anchor Borrowers Programme has resulted in sharp decline in the nation’s major food import bill, from $2.23billion in 2014 to USD 0.59bn by end of 2018.
Akume added that the rice import bill alone dropped from USD1.0bn to USD0.0185bn (approximately 500%) annually, while these initiatives supported local production of rice, maize, cotton, and cassava.
He continued, “The government financed 2.5 million small-holder farmers cultivating about 3.2 million hectares of farmland all over the country and created 10 million direct and indirect jobs. A genuine partnership between the government and its citizens is therefore one of the sure-footed steps going forward.”