AGENE GODWIN, Benin
The Federal Government’s new policy on importation of vehicles through her land borders and some recommendations of the report of the 2014 national conference came under scrutiny Thursday in Benin City as erudite scholar and social commentator, Professor Eddy Eragbe said that the Federal Government should adopt some recommendations of the Confab on economic recovery for the country.
He also added that the ban on importation of vehicles across land borders should have been subjected to national discourse before being announced.
Eragbe spoke as guest lecturer at the on-going 2016 Press Week organized by the Edo State Council of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) on the topic: Nigeria Beyond Oil, the Role of the Media, where he also posited that the media was critical for the country to move out of its current economic “depression”.
At the event where the Spiritual Leader, Christ Chosen Church of God Worldwide, Apostle Joshua Osasuyi was honoured, Eragbe said the current economic woes of the country could be linked to years of mal-administration.
“From nowhere, just yesterday without national discussion and engaging the people, the Federal Government is banning the importation of cars through land routes. You can’t run economies like this in a civilian dispensation. This is not a military administration that works with the slogan of “immediate effect” and worst still there are no signs of conscious efforts to change in terms of the negative values of our society. Our submission is that we can get to actualize part if not all the goals of Vision 20:2020 and really set our economy on the true path of diversification and development if we get it right first as a people in terms of our values, which must be reflected in the way we govern our people and provide for them.”
Eragbe said the 2014 Confab dwelt extensively on means of revamping the nation’s economy and urged the current administration to borrow some of the recommendations of the report.
““The current prognosis concerning our economy are depressing, but surely curable. I happen to have been a member of the 2014 National Confab. With all sense of modesty I want to report that the issue of the economy, trade and investment was one cardinal point that was handled by the Confab. The recommendations of the Confab on this subject alone are to be found between pages 155 and 215 of the Report of the Confab. In addition, between pages 356 and 373, the report also contained numerous recommendations on Public Finance, while pages 373-387 contain diverse recommendations on the Public Service. I had to point these sections of the Confab report out because they support the point that the present government stands to benefit from that report, especially as it was only this week that the government decided to commence a two day economic summit on the economy.”
He, however, said there was hope that the country would be better going by glimpses of development in states like Edo, Ondo, Lagos, Anambra and others.
In his opening address, chairman of the occasion, Col Paul Ogbebor (rtd) said there was need for sustainable economic development of the country to trigger development.
Earlier in his welcome address, chairman, Edo State Council of NUJ, Sir Roland Osakue (JP) said that the Union was prompted to honor Apostle Joshua Osasuyi because God has used him to touch and transform the spiritual lives of many.
Osasuyi, on his part said that the reason why Nigerian politicians see election as a ” do-or-die ” affair is because they see government as an easy way to steal money.
He commended the media for the role it has been playing in order to bring sanity and decorum to the society by exposing all corrupt practices in the nation.