Former Secretary to the Federal Military Government and Elder Statesman, Chief Olu Falae, has called for reintroduction of log-term strategic development plans in order to put the economic back on the right footing.
Chief Falae said the abandonment of such development plans has led to the economic misfortune and wide infrastructural deficit in the country.
He made this call on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 on a special live interview programme on the
Television Service of the Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State, BCOS TV.
The Elder Statesman observed that since the return to democracy in 1999, successive civilian regimes, beginning from Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, have jettisoned the development plans model in governance.
While justifying the introduction of the controversial Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) initiated by the Ibrahim Babangida Military Administration under which he served as the Secretary to the Government, Chief Falae argued that SAP was an attempt to get the economy back on track; adding that it was substantially succesful.
He said before SAP, oil earning collapsed and the Nation could no longer pay for foreign exchange; adding that the only way to get out of this trouble was to SAP under which, as he puts it “we learned to produce at home and send abroad to earn foreign exchange.”
Chief Olu Falae said: “SAP strengthened farmers following the scrapping of Marketing Boards. Rural areas were opened up because farmers dealt directly with cash crop marketers. On the whole it led to cheap production at home,facilitated rural revival and reestablished economic democracy.”
The foremost technocrat and retired Banker while lamenting on the rampant culture of election rigging and vote buying in the country said this culture started from the period of Nigerian civil war when in his words, “values were murdered,when emergency contractors became millionaires and when academics turned to businessmen.”
On President Buhari’s war against corruption, Chief Falae said, “the recent probes of the former acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Mr Ibrahim Magu, and some of his officials have shown that those fighting corruption were commuting greater corruption.”
He said those who wants to fight corruption should lead by example and be committed to principle of transparency.