APC, PDP disagree over diversification of economy
OPPOSITION All Progressives Congress (APC) Thursday traded tackles with the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the diversification of the nation’s economy.
Although both APC National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and Dr. Katchi Ononuju, PDP chieftain, who represented the two leading political parties in the polity respectively agreed on the need to diversify the economy, at a debate series organised by the Center for Democracy and Development (CDD) at the Abuja Sheraton Hotel and Towers.
Ononuju said the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration had been pursuing an economic development programme tailored towards a market driven economy, adding the vast opportunities presented to Nigerians of school age up to university level particularly in the northern part of the country to access which, underlines the resolve of the PDP to make the economy an all inclusive one.
He listed at the establishment of twelve additional universities and the establishment of the Almajiri model schools in the north as a clear-cut example of the holistic approach by the PDP to open up the economic space to all Nigerians. He also referred to the successes recorded in the fertiliser distribution to farmers, remarked that the effort which has eliminated the problems associated with the influence of middlemen and corruption, which has translated into the establishment of 2.5 million farms, increased yields of farm produce to the tune of 12 million tons of food items as well as job creation for the teeming population of Nigerians. This, the PDP chieftain argued has led to the abundance of food in the polity, with prices of food had remained stable in spite the recent devaluation of the naira.
However, Mohammed insist that Nigerians must not be misled into thinking that non increment in the price of foodstuffs should be mistaken for the fact that the agricultural sector is doing well.
He promised that an APC led government would offer extension services to farmers and encourage them to form co-operatives to be able to access incentives from government.
According to the APC chieftain industrialisation remains the panacea to the revitalisation of the economy, adding that under an APC led government, there would be a national policy, which would among others; create six regional industrial development centres, and the establishment of a N60 billion industrial growth fund to be administered in conjunction with the banking sector transparently.