By Daniel Idonor
ABUJA—THE Federal Government, yesterday, took a swipe at former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, over his claim on the state of the Nigerian economy, saying that Soludo’s days at the CBN remain the worst ever in Nigeria’s history.
Reacting to a media report (not Vanguard) credited to Soludo that the economy is doomed to fail, the government dismissed the claim as politically motivated, insisting that the former CBN boss was as agent of doom.
Prof. Soludo, in an essay published in a national daily, had expressed concern that the government had been piling up domestic and foreign debts with no improvement in the economy while external reserves are depleting rather precariously to about $36 billion
Fielding questions from State House Correspondents, during post Federal Executive Council,FEC, briefing, Minister of State for Information and Communication, Mr Labaran Maku, said, that although government was looking at the claim critically, government was concerned with the cleaning up of Soludo’s mess in the economy.
The Minister disclosed that the establishment of the Asset Management Company of Nigeria, AMCON, was indeed to address some of the crisis that the present government inherited from Soludo’s misconduct while regulating the financial sector, but noted that “today the financial sector is stabilising as every report on the economy has shown.
“Suffice it to say that we hold him accountable for all that is happening in recent months of our participation in government, let me say that we have had reports on the state of our economy submitted by the current CBN governor Lamido Sanusi”.
He said “in the report which was widely circulated the CBN governor informed FEC and Nigeria on the state of the economy and that the Nigerian economy is due to grow by 7 per cent and this projected growth will increase from year to year as we proceed with the implementation of our programme”.
“You know we are in partisan economic times and so every person speaking about the Nigerian economy today, you have to analyse critically why those comments are coming at this critical times.
We know that in the last one year, we have been contending with the issues in the financial sector following the very difficult circumstances we inherited as a result of the misdirection and sometimes misapplication of the reforms in the banking sector and government has struggled with some of this banks”, he declared.
He assured that Government is determined to grow this economy even as he remarked that “we welcome criticisms and comments on government programmes and activities”.
“We don’t take them as offensive but we are confident in the economic policies of this administration and what we are doing to grow the economy.”
Filename Maku September 15, 2010