The consequences of the economic policies of President Mohammadu Buhari’s administration are said to have worsened the welfare of traders from frying pan to real fire.
The Managing Director of Castle Kitchen, Mr Akin Ezuluka stated this while speaking in his office along Owerri road, Nnewi, Anambra state.
He pointed out that things were relatively better for the traders in the era of administrations preceding the present government led by President Buhari, which according to him, came on board with so much promises of what the administration would bring to the table.
“During the campaigns, they brought to us a change agenda which they said would take us to the promised land where people will have opportunity to actualize their dreams and potentials but the reality today is that this administration has taken the country ten years backward.
“Nigeria was indeed the giant of Africa upto 2015 when the nation’s economy was leading all other African countries but South Africa and other smaller countries have overtaken Nigeria because the present administration is not just clueless but purposeless, directionless and indeed vision-less.
“We all remember that the administration of Dr Goodluck Jonathan had a robust economic team comprising of people who have distinguished themselves in the field of banking, finance and economics not minding their political leanings. But President Buhari has reduced everything to political patronage.
The Ezinifite born businessman said that the rate at which traders are getting frustrated is beginning to affect other sectors like the hospitality sector servicing the Nkwo Nnewi main market which was bubbling before the present administration came on board.
“This administration has peculiar problems in the sense that there is great inflation in the economy which automatically reduces the purchasing power of ordinary Nigerians. The situation is made worse by low level of cash in circulation. If things continue this way, I bet you, many people will have to close their shops.
“This administration is pretending to be fighting corruption but their approach toward the war is even corrupt. How can one explain the reason behind the administration’s gesture of giving those going on pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia the dollar at official rate of N197 while the manufacturers who needed the foreign exchange for production that gives boost to the economy are left to grapple with the forces of demand and supply.
The MD of Castle Kitchen said that nations all over the world are diversifying their economies on concrete terms while Nigeria is busy paying lip service to the issue.
“This government has been singing it like song that people should embrace agriculture but what have they done to make the dream of self sufficiency in food production a reality. I expect that certain level of production should be reached before they ban importation of items like rice. The policy or lack of clear cut policy from the government of the day is pauperising the people and that is certainly not good for business.
Mr Ezuluka who noted that an hungry man will always be an angry man said that any policy that will not put food on the tables of an average Nigerian should be discouraged, said that it is only when people are well fed that they can then be creative.
“Go round the market and you will appreciate what I am telling you, this is one of the largest market in West Africa, the growth of the market has led to the large number of financial institutions and other service oriented institutions in the town but since this systematic frustration of the traders started, especially in Buhari’s administration, people are no longer at ease because things had fallen apart at an unexpected rate.
The MD of Castle Kitchen appealed to President Buhari to as a matter urgency reconstitute an economic team made up of competent and qualified personalities to checkmate the rate at which the nation’s economy is nose diving.
“These call has become imperative because the number of people making their living directly and indirectly from our markets are so many and if these enterprising ones are pushed out of business then that would spell doom for the nation.