President Muhammadu Buhari has said he is yet to be convinced on the devaluation of the nation’s currency, insisting that ordinary Nigerians have not benefit from Naira devaluation in the past.
Senior Special Adviser to the President on Media, Femi Adesina, quoted Buhari as saying he has resisted Naira devaluation because he has not seen the advantages.
The President disclosed this on Friday at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja while meeting with members of the Council of Retired Federal Permanent Secretaries.
“When I was military Head of State, the IMF and the World Bank wanted us devalue the Naira and remove petrol subsidy but I stood my grounds for the good of Nigeria.
“The Naira remained strong against the Dollar and other foreign currencies until I was removed from office in August, 1985 and it was devalued. But how many factories were built and how many jobs were created by the devaluation?
“That is why I am still asking to be convinced today on the benefits of devaluation,” the President told the retired Permanent Secretaries led by Otunba Christopher Tugbobo.
He welcomed the council’s pledge of support for the successful implementation of his administration’s change agenda, especially in the priority areas of improving security, curbing corruption and revitalising the national economy.
“I am glad you have rightly identified the key issues we campaigned on,” President Buhari also told his visitors.
The president said his administration needed a dynamic bureaucracy that would not mislead it into taking wrong decisions.
Chief Philip Asiodu, the Pioneer Chairman of the Council, was quoted to have said that members of the council wanted Buhari’s administration to succeed “because Nigeria has already lost many opportunities for progress.
“We are non-partisan. The interest of Nigeria is paramount to us and we are anxious that you should succeed,” Asiodu told President Buhari.
The Council of Retired Federal Permanent Secretaries was established in 2004 to serve as a platform for retired permanent secretaries to offer constructive advice to government on key policy issues.