Nigerians will benefit from resources of the nation – Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has assured Nigerians that although the nation may be passing through difficult times now, the Buhari presidency will ensure that the people benefit from the resources of the nation.

He asked the people to do the right things despite the current hardship in order to get the benefit of the nation’s resources.

Mr. Osinbajo gave the advice on Tuesday at a meeting with the Australian Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary, African Branch, Mr Mathew Neuhaus.

“It is a difficult time, but we think it is an excellent opportunity to do right by the people so that our people are able to get the benefit of the nation’s resources,” Professor Osinbajo said.

Listing the steps that the current administration was making in the areas of security, governance, anti-corruption and the economy, the Vice President said there had been a liberalisation of the oil and gas’ downstream sector.

“The flexible foreign exchange policy just recently put in place would encourage foreign investment.

“We are looking forward to the benefits of the new foreign exchange policy,” a statement by his spokesman, Laolu Akande quoted him as saying.

Commending the Australian government for its “excellent support,” in the fight against insurgents in the Northeast, the Vice President observed that while significant progress had been recorded in militarily downgrading Boko Haram, the other challenge now was overcoming the ideology that motivates terrorist activities.

“We have already dealt with Boko Haram militarily, we now have to deal with the ideology (of terror) and this is something that the entire world has to also deal with. The terrorists basically reject any engagement, simply preaching hate and murder. It is a new kind of threat, the ideology and motivation is what we-the global community- have to find a way to deal with,” Professor Osinbajo pointed out.

Earlier, Mr Neuhaus, who had previously served as his country’s High Commissioner in Nigeria congratulated the Buhari administration observing that the presidency is “off to a good start”.

He also praised the steps that have been taken so far by the administration, some of which he said have not been “easy”.

“Australia looks forward to doing more with the government and working “very closely with Nigeria,” said Mr Neuhaus, who was accompanied by the country’s High Commissioner in Nigeria, Mr Paul Lehmann.

In particular he mentioned closer relationship in mining and investment, and also cooperating at the Commonwealth and the United Nations.

Nigeria is facing series of challenges – insecurity in the northeast, which the army has contained to a large extent, resurgence of militancy in the south-south that has reduced the nation oil output and volatile oil price which has affected the nation’s revenue, as over 70 per cent of the nation’s revenue comes from crude oil sales among others.

The economy of the nation has also been hugely affected by this challenges, leading to increase in inflation, with critics saying there is so much hardship.

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