Professor Pat Utomi says Buhari cannot be free of blame, even as Nigerians suffer and fight recession
Utomi says the Buhari-led administration must shoulder the blame for Nigeria’s economic hardship
He says Buhari’s government should have foreseen the challenges ahead of time
Prof Pat Utomi, the director of the Lagos Business School, has said that the lack of planning by President Muhammadu Buhari and his team, is what Nigerians are suffering at the moment.
Utomi who made this assertion on Wednesday, March 5, in Awka, blamed the APC administration for the economic recession in the country, arguing that those attributing the recession to fall in oil price were bad mangers.
President Muhammadu Buhari during the Federal Executive Council Meeting held at the Council Chamber State House Abuja.
Utomi, who spoke as guest lecturer at the maiden edition of Dr Emmanuel Egbogah budget round-table organized by the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Business School, Awka, said the Buhari government should have foreseen the situation, had it been that it was futuristic in budget planning and management of resources.
His lecture titled: “Budget Processes In Nigeria: Challenges And Implications For National Development”, blamed the situation in the country on lack foresight, adding that a good national budget ought to have preempted the situation.
According to him, a good budget should contain what the people want and envisage the implications of future economic changes and challenges.
He said: “Our major problem is that we lack planning and if there is no discipline, then budgeting is a waste of time.
“Budgeting process must be matched with where the people are going, but beyond revenue and expenditure, budget has to do with discipline and execution.
“Those blaming fall in oil price are just bad mangers because fall in oil price is not the cause of this recession.”
Utomi also lamented the prevailing backwardness in the country, stating that the sad situation was basically thrown up by the events of 1966, when, he said, a gang of military boys hijacked the leadership of the country.
According to him, the same characters had remained in power since then in different guises.
Similarly, the deputy chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Mr Chris Azubuogu, in his keynote address, listed factors that hindered the actualization of national budget to include poor funding of budget, lopsided budgeting, deficit budget and high domestic debt profile which he said was in trillions of naira.
Vanguard reports that in his address, the director of the school, Prof Austin Nonyelu said the conference was necessitated by the challenges and problems that bedeviled Nigeria’s budget process at all levels of governance, which he noted, had impacted negatively on service delivery.
He said Nigeria budget process at all levels of governance was bedeviled by myriad challenges and problems which impact negatively on service delivery.
“The common narrative in Nigeria is that federal and state budgets are rarely implemented with consequential negative effects.
“The newly established Unizik Business School in Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka is committed to unraveling these issues, and hopes to provide the roadmap that will direct, and reorient the entire mechanisms and processes involved in budget development and implementation,” he said.
Meanwhile, a faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) being led by Senator Ahmed Makarfi, has said that it is wrong to blame God for the outbreak of Cerebrospinal Meningitis in the country.
It said that rather than blame God, the Governor of Zamafara State, Alhaji Abdullaziz Yari should blame his political party, the All Progressives Congress for its inability to curtail the scourge.
NAIJ reported that Makarfi stated this in a statement issued by the spokesperson for the sacked National Caretaker Committee of the party which he heads, Prince Dayo Adeyeye in Abuja on Wednesday.
Adeyeye said that the primary responsibility of any government was to protect the lives and property of its citizens, adding that the APC-led Federal Government had remained insensitive, careless and adamant to the plight of Nigerians in all ramification.
He said: “As of Tuesday, about 336 Nigerians have lost their lives due to the outbreak of type C Cerebrospinal Meningitis and the Federal Ministry of Health has not taken any concrete step to contend with the spread. ”
It is on record that the PDP Government in 16 years did not allow such mindless display of insensitivity as seen by this APC Administration.”