On Tuesday, President Muhammadu Buhari attributed the country’s recent insurgency as the cause of the decline in oil revenues.
He claimed that the South East insurgency and Boko Haram’s actions in the North East were keeping the nation from reaching its full potential as an oil-producing nation.
After officially opening three projects completed by the Governor Hope Uzodimma administration, he addressed stakeholders during a meeting in Owerri, the capital of Imo State.
The president expressed relief that his administration had managed to contain the insurgency but sadness that prominent Nigerians had contributed to the problem.
If Nigerians could recall, he remarked, “OPEC projected 2.1 million barrels per day at $100 per barrel between 1999 and 2015, when we arrived.
“But look at the status of the railroads and the infrastructure; it was all but destroyed. Power… we’re still having trouble. It was unfortunate that the extremists in the South South had been set loose when we arrived. Unfortunately, the cost of petroleum decreased by 50% while production fell to 500,000 barrels per day.
“Unfortunately, the price of gasoline dropped once more, this time from $28 to $27. Ask anyone from Borno or Adamawa how many local governments were controlled by Boko Haram when looking at the issue in the North East—these are highly dishonest individuals.
“However, now that the government is in command, go ask the diligent Borno governor how many local governments they now control.
“This government has done remarkably well considering the relative calm and resources. I have to say it because I don’t know why people who should be saying it aren’t.
To combat insurgency, banditry, and other security issues that, in his view, impede development, Buhari urged the nation’s elite to work with his government.
The president claimed his administration had made significant progress in combating insecurity and deteriorating infrastructure at a stakeholders meeting held at Douglas House in Owerri, the capital of Imo State.
The Owerri-Orlu Road, Phase One of the Owerri-Okigwe Road, and the Imo State House of Assembly complex, reconstructed by the government of Governor Hope Uzodimma, were all officially opened by the president shortly after he touched down at the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport.
He said his administration was able to achieve much despite dwindling economic resources.
“My administration is addressing infrastructure and security in Nigeria when compared with what we used to have from 1999 till 2015 when we took over,” he said.
The president said the sustained efforts by the military had seriously eroded the capacity of insurgents to hold the country to ransom.
Uzodimma said the roads Buhari inaugurated were abandoned by his predecessors for decades.
He said his administration constructed 105 roads in less than three years in office.
He added that his administration had done so much with scarce resources despite insecurity and social media blackmail that were politically contrived.
At the event, the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Prof George Obiozor, said insecurity and infrastructural decay were the two major things affecting the South East region and appealed to the federal government to address them.