In recent months and as the General Elections draw nigh, President Buhari and his team has insisted that economic growth under his presidency “is better than it has been in many decades,” it has equally stood by the old lines like a Trump that “the Economy is raging at an all-time high, and is set to get even better,” and “It has been many years that we have seen these kind of (economic) numbers.”…If not for the last reckless administration we would have been TRANSMITTING better.
While some hyperbole is a matter of opinion, my President and claims by his henchmen and woman in the person of Kemi Adesoun that his stewardship of the economy puts his predecessors to shame can be checked by public information that is readily available to all. In fact, the data shown by the National Bureau of Statistics that compared to his predecessors, Buhari’s record so far falls somewhere between unremarkable and substandard. Moreover, other economic data suggest that the current expansion will likely wind down before his term ends, and his boasting will ring hollow once the economy slips from recession to depression because truth be told the situation at the TRANSMITTING tower is not good.
It is commonly said that a President deserves some credit or blame for the economy’s performance only after he’s been in office about six months. On those terms, let’s measure Buhari’s words against the record for real GDP growth over the last three quarters (July 2017 through March 2018). And those of the last twenty years and equally note that he is well into the final lap of his administration, the signal strength at the TRANSMISSION studio is at best poor.
Like all of Mr. Buahri’s predecessors, he promised to reform regulation and boost business investment, because such measures can stimulate faster growth. Moreover, if the new investments focus on productivity-boosting equipment, they also can help raise people’s incomes. Through all of last year, Buhari and his advisors insisted that business investment would soar once he cut corruption but like NaijaBet, the economic team has played a ‘Kalo-Kalo economy. We have TRANSMITTED false hopes.
So, Buhari devoted much of his first six months in office to rolling back time and castigating, and castrating the economy, and much of the next months on his single major legislative achievement; blaming the past and problems he inherited. Many economists (myself excluded) pointed out that APC had no economic blueprint and if any it’s changes didn’t alter reality in any meaningful way.
Now let me tell us a story and then I would round up this admonition…
A Professor started his class on a very serious topic. The moment he turned towards the blackboard, one of the students whistled. He turned, looked at the class and asked the whistler’s name. No one answered.
The Professor peacefully kept the pen in his pocket saying: “Lecture ends here. I’ll tell you a story to utilize the remaining time”.
Everyone became interested.
“Yesterday night I tried hard to sleep, but it was miles away from my eyes, so I thought I’d better get petrol in my car, which will save my time next morning and might induce sleep. After having my tank full, I started roaming in that area, enjoying the peace of a traffic free ride.
Suddenly, on the corner I saw a girl who was as young and beautiful as the clothes she was wearing. Must have been returning from a party. Out of courtesy, I turned my car towards her and asked if I may be of any help. She asked me if I could drop her to her home, she’ll be very obliged, to which I agreed.
She sat in the front seat with me. We started talking, and to my amazement she was very intelligent, had control on many topics which many youngsters don’t.
When we reached her address, she admitted my courteous nature and behavior and accepted that she had fallen in love with me. I also admitted her intelligence and beauty and that I’ve also started liking her. I told her about my job as a professor in the university.
The girl asked my number, which I gave her willingly. Then she asked me a favor, to which I couldn’t have denied naturally.
She said that her brother is a student in the same university, and asked me to take care of him, since we’ll be in a long relationship now.
I asked the name of the student. She said that I’ll recognize him with one of his very prominent quality, *He whistles a lot!*
All eyes in the classroom turned towards the boy who had whistled.
The professor said: *”I didn’t buy my Ph. D in Psychology I earned it”
No economist, much less any politician, has a test or technique to accurately predict the onset of a recession. One important reason is that a recession usually requires a shock that tips a weakening economy into a contraction. And for all the professors, the English accent-speaking minister, apex bank chief, economic team and experts. They all have not figured out, or at best do not agree whether it is inadequate or lack of, or the type transmission oyel (oil) is the problem besetting our never evolving economy.
So like I counted billboards, posters and signage all pointing towards 2019, we are nowhere like the professor in the story justifying why we are our economy has refused to show fluidity. We are harangued by poor transmitting transmission, promissory notes that cannot be ‘expended’ according to my friend Dalung, whither way to economic independence and fulfillment that will transmit good governance—only time will tell.
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