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Payment of N5,000 by FG creates an officially recognised ‘begging class’

On Saturday December 31, 2016, at the residence of the publisher of Vanguard, on a shelf was a copy of Lee Kuan Yew’s global best seller which many people had written and talked about – but few ever read. It was time to read it from page to page in the hope that there might be some insights in it for Nigeria. I was an undergraduate reading Economics in the United States when in August 1965 the majority Malaysians physically threw out the minority Chinese and other races and forced them to form a new country – Singapore. It was a small island state with no natural resources, no large population, nothing to build upon. The vast majority of economist in the US gave the new country no more than six months before collapsing. Its per capital income was far less than that of Nigeria. But, by 2000, it had per capita income of over $13,000 per annum – the third highest of any nation in the world.

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