Nigerians have been asked to forget about expecting President Muhammadu Buhari to solve the high level of poverty in the country.
This came as the former Rivers State governor and Minister of Transportation in Buhari’s first tenure, Rotimi Amaechi, on Monday said that the current government or “even three or four administrations in Nigeria cannot do that (solve the issue of poverty in Nigeria) because the level of poverty is deeply rooted.”
Amaechi, who fielded questions from reporters on the state of the nation on Monday said: “Look at it this way; if an economy is running purely on agriculture and a new president comes and says no, no, that it won’t continue, we have to re-gig the economy to create productivity.
“Before you can finish creating such products, it would take more than 15 years because at that point, you are not just talking about agriculture, you are talking about industrialisation, you are talking about power, you are talking about roads and transportation.
“Now, the president is focusing on roads, power, and transportation.
“Look at the railway, if we do Lagos to Kano for $8.3 billion. Of the $8.3billion, N5 trillion is for just 1,500 km of railway meanwhile our budget is just N8trilion.
“If you remove N8.5 trillion from our budget on rail lines, what about salaries and other sectors of the economy? So no one government can fulfil all that.
“It is a gradual process and that is why we are taking the railway project in several segments.
“And then we are under political pressure from everybody who wants rail lines in their side to be done.
“We have done Abuja to Kaduna, we are doing Lagos to Ibadan, we have asked for a loan for Port Harcourt to Warri and then Benin to Onitsha while also trying to complete Ibadan to Kano.”