President Muhammadu Buhari says some wicked people plundered the country and “kept Nigerians poor”.
According to Femi Adesina, spokesman of the president, Buhari said this in London Sunday while receiving a delegation of the Buhari Diaspora Support Organisation.
Buhari said his administration had not done badly considering that it met the country “without savings and the economy badly vandalised”.
President Buhari said the damage done to the Nigerian economy in the years of plunder was massive, and that government was doing its best to recover some of the loot, although it was impossible to identify and recover all.
“If they had used 50% of the money we made when oil prices went as high as $143 dollars per barrel and stabilised at $100 dollars with production at 2.1 million barrels per day for many years, Nigerians would have minded their businesses,” he said.
“You could almost grow food on our roads, as they were abandoned. The stealing was so much, and they were so inept that they could not even cover the stealing properly. I wonder how all those things could have happened to our country.”
The president, who noted that Nigeria was gifted with tremendous human and natural resources, regretted that the failure of some of the leaders of the nation led to the inability of his administration to capitalise on resources to improve the lot of the people.
He, however, commended Nigerians who are in the diaspora defending the country, saying that they have shown courage and sacrifice.
He also thanked the Buhari Diaspora Support Organisation for deciding to identify with the country, “when you could have stayed here being comfortable”.
Responding, Charles Sylvester, coordinator of the organisation, said the group was happy with the achievements of Buhari’s administration.
He said the president had overcome most of the challenges he met, especially in the areas of agriculture revolution, ease of doing business, anti-corruption war, employment of youths through the N-Power programme, and the blockage of leakages in the public sector through the Treasury Single Account (TSA), among others.