By Stanley Nwanosike
Mr Osita Okechukwu, the Director-General of the Voice of Nigeria (VON), has expressed optimism over President Muhammadu Buhari’s plan to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within the next 10 years.
Okechukwu expressed this optimism in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), on Friday in Enugu.
The VON boss, who was reacting to salient points in Buhari’s Independence Anniversary speech, said that the President had already laid down plans and actions in motion to achieve the target.
According to him, Buhari’s revolution in the agricultural industry is already a success story which anyone fair to his administration will attest to.
“Also, we have digital economy drive which is appealing to young Nigerians. It is gradually driving the self-reliance agenda by engaging them in genuine digital and online businesses.
“The government has given thousands of free-interest soft-loans through monies to traders and others growing cottages or family businesses.
“Buhari is also doing everything possible to fix electricity and roads across the country in order to facilitate growth of small, medium and big scale industries.
“The federal government is also relaxing processes and registration fees of businesses and industries.
“The country today has an import policy now that favours local production and consumption 100 per cent, unlike in any other previous administration.
“Nigeria is gradually becoming as precious as Diamond. We are a precious country,” he said.
“All the country should do now is to join hands with Buhari to work together toward lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years.
“One is happy that the President in his speech re-proclaimed his passion to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
“My fascination with the proclamation to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty is that the agitation among ethno-religious front-lines, gross unemployment and all manner of insecurity can be attributed to abject poverty in the land.
“Poverty and hunger are intertwined and an old English proverb says that a hungry man is an angry man. It is also said that prosperity wipes off tears and enmity,’’ he said.
Okechukwu declared that the most important take away from the President’s speech remained his commitment to invest more in his Agrarian Revolution, Digital Economy Drive and support to medium and small scale industries.
“Investment in these areas remain a sure way of gradually lifting our people out of poverty in their very large numbers,’’ he added.