President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday said he will gladly reverse or abandon some inherited economic policies if doing so will lead to the creation of more jobs for Nigerians.
According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President spoke at a meeting he had with executive members of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Adesina said the President had therefore directed the Ministries of Industries, Trade and Investment, and Finance, as well as the Central Bank and other relevant government agencies to evolve before next year’s budget, new policies to boost domestic manufacturing.
“We are in difficult times economically, but we will continue to do our best for manufacturing to pick up. We must begin to behave as if we have no oil at all.
“We will gladly have policy somersaults, if it will mean more jobs, particularly for youths.
“I campaigned on three major planks. To effectively secure our country, provide employment through revamping the economy, and wage a relentless war against corruption.
“I intend to keep faith with these promises,” the President was quoted as saying.
Buhari also lamented that the textile industry that employed about 320,000 people in the past only parades about 30,000 now.
“It shows the carelessness of past governments, if almost 300,000 people lose jobs in a single sector. We have a clear idea of how we can stimulate employment and we will work very hard to do so,” President Buhari told the MAN delegation.
The MAN President, Dr. Frank Jacobs, had appealed for a review of policies that stifled the manufacturing sector.
Jacobs noted that the importance of a robust manufacturing sector for the general well-being of the economy cannot be over-emphasised.