With $30 Oil Price, We Have To Prioritize Our Campaign Promises – Lai Mohammed
SAN FRANCISCO, February 29, (THEWILL) – The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has explained that current economic realities will make the Muhammadu Buhari administration fall short of its promises since promises made in the build up to the 2015 presidential election were made at a time oil was selling for $100 per barrel.
Speaking while being interviewed on Channels Television programme: Sunday Politics, Mohammed said: “We are in a completely different situation from that which we envisaged. We did not in our wildest dreams think that the price of crude will crash from about $100 to $30.
“This is only a challenge; we have faced similar things before. One of the major economic focus is to ensure that by the end of this year, we would have achieved import substitution in many sectors.
“When you campaign, you say you'll do A, B, C, but when you win elections, you'll priotise. We were elected for a four-year period, not for one year. Things, we hope, will not be bad all through these four years.
“We are still faithful to those promises, but when we were campaigning, the price of crude was $100 a barrel. Today, its $30 a barrel, so definitely, we would have to downsize some of the things we intended to do, or prioritize them.”
The Minister debunked claims that Buhari's fight against corruption is one-sided, stressing that the present administration does not micro-manage anti-graft agencies.
He however expressed regrets that rather than allow their cases to be expeditiously concluded to prove their innocence, those currently standing trial for corruption have continued to carry out all manner of delay tactics to ensure that their cases outlive the Buhari administration.
While admitting that corruption exists in every political party, Mohammed said: “It would be wrong of me to start mentioning names of members of party A or party B that have been accused of corruption. But if you pay more attention, and see those who are coming and going out of court, you will know which parties they belong to.
“One thing is clear, corruption in Nigeria cuts across religion, cuts across ethnicity; cuts across political parties. Having said this, we do not micromanage anti-graft agencies. I am government and I can tell you authoritatively that this government does not tell EFCC who to arrest and who not.”