Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Thursday led members of the Economic Sustainability Committee to submit the Sustainability Plan to President Muhammadu Buhari.
On 2 April, President Buhari set up an Economic Sustainability Committee chaired by Vice President Osinbajo, to develop a comprehensive economic plan to respond to the disruptions and dislocations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and crashing of oil prices in the global market.
President Buhari charged the Committee to amongst other things develop a clear economic sustainability plan from now till 2023, identify fiscal and monetary measures to enhance oil and non-oil revenues in order to fund the plan, develop a stimulus package and come up with other clear-cut measures to create more jobs while keeping existing ones.
Updating Nigerians on the activities of the Committee, Mr Laolu Akande, spokesperson to the Vice President said in a tweet that the Plan includes creating new jobs.
“Vice President is leading members of the ESC to submit to President, the Sustainability Plan, detailing policy options and programmes designed to proactively stimulate the Nigerian economy, retain and create jobs, turning COVID-19 to opportunity,” he said in the tweet.
Prof. Osinbajo had met with National Assembly, Presidential Economic Advisory Council, State Governors, International Monetary Fund and World Bank management, among others to arrive at a robust Plan for Nigeria.
While inaugurating the committee, the Vice President noted that “what Mr President has asked us to do is to devise a strategy in order to be able to keep the economy going and also make provisions to ensure that we are able to retain jobs and indeed create more.
“We also need to develop the Nigerian economy in a way that we will even take advantage of the challenges of these times and convert those challenges to opportunities,” Prof. Osinbajo added.
Speaking on the focus of the committee and what would be done to salvage the situation in the country, the Vice President said “what we will need to do is something that is bold, radical and one that our people can understand and buy into.
“We must design a broad vision that takes into account how to implement a big plan inclusive of a focus on mass local productivity and mass employment.
“The big plan of government is to find a way for us to be able to do mass housing, increase agricultural production, ensure massive local productivity by among several other options, increasing support to MSMEs, and majorly improve avenues to put more cash in the hands of our people and also make them productive,” the VP noted.
Members of the Economic Sustainability Committee include Ministers of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed; Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo; Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige; Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola; the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouq; and Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Silva. Others include, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mr Mele Kyari; the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele and the Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Office in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Babatunde Lawal who is the secretary of the committee.