Friday, March 23

Atiku, Fani-Kayode, El-Rufai react to Bill Gates’ statement against Buhari’s economic plan

Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Former Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode and Kaduna state governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has reacted to the statement credited to philanthropist and founder of Microsoft, Bill Gates concerning Nigeria’s Economic plan.

Bill Gates at the expanded national economic council said that President Buhari’s economic recovery growth plan (ERGP) does not truly reflect the needs of Nigerians.

He was quoted as saying “The Nigerian government’s economic recovery and growth plan identify investing in our people as one of three strategic objectives.

“But the execution priorities don’t fully reflect people’s needs, prioritising physical capital over human capital.”

Reacting, Atiku hailed Bill Gates for his interest and support in the economic growth of Nigeria.

The Former Vice President wrote on his Twitter page “I applaud @BillGates for his interest and support of Nigeria.

“I share his concerns of the challenges we face and believe as he does they can be overcome when we as a nation consciously make requisite investments in our human capital and infrastructure.”

In his reaction, Fani-Kayode blasted President Buhari and called him a disaster.

He advised the President to listen to the truth spoken by Bill Gates and address issues in the country.

The former minister stated these in a series of tweets.

He wrote “You invited Bill Gates to your Economic Council meeting and he told you the bitter truth and that things are not working the way they should.

“When your guest tells you the bitter truth you better sit up and listen. Gates needs nothing from you and he has no reason to lie. You are a disaster.”

However, El-Rufai faulted Bill Gate's statement.

El-Rufai, who was among the governors at the meeting where Gates spoke, said the Nigeria’s economy plan had enough provision for human capital.

“On the review of ERGP as suggested by Gates, it is not correct to say that the economic recovery and growth plan does not give primacy to human capital, it is not correct,” el-Rufai said.

“The economic recovery and growth plan has enough provision for human capital, it is a federal government plan, what is needed is for states to have similar plans as well as adequate provisions for healthcare and education.

“Because the bulk of the burden for healthcare and education really rests on states governments. The disease burden of the country is largely at the primary healthcare level and this primary healthcare system is broken completely, we need to rebuild it.

“It is the responsibility of the states rather than the federal government. The federal government incentifies with funding, grants and aids. But essentially, routine immunization, primary healthcare, is the responsibility of the states.

“So it is not gaps in the ERGP that we are looking at, it is appealing to states governments to provide more money in basic education, primary healthcare. It is not the ERGP that needs adjustments, it is the budgeting that needs to be ramped up in these two key areas because these are where the problems are.

“If a child losses equality education, he is done for life. If a child doesn’t get quality healthcare in the first two years, he is destroyed for life. This is the message that we invest more at the lower level, so that we prevent this disaster from happening,” he added.

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