Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has revealed that the extreme poverty problem in Nigeria denies him sleep at night.
“I think what keeps me up at night has to do with extreme poverty,” he said on Tuesday in Lagos at a dinner and interactive session with Faculty Members of Harvard Business School.
Osinbajo further noted that the largest numbers of those who voted for President Muhammadu Buhari and him are very poor.
“The issue is that the largest number of those who vote for us are the very poor,” he added.
“The promises that government makes to them is that their lives will be better and obviously they are looking at their lives being better in the shortest possible time.
“I will like to see Nigeria being an industrialised nation in the next 10 years; a very strong middle class and most people living above poverty line,’’ the vice president noted.
Osinbajo further stated that poor Nigerians are always taken into account in the creation of government policies, adding that through agriculture, the government had been able to lift farmers out of poverty.
He also spoke on the Social Intervention Programmes (SIPs) which according to him had been given a lot of attention and has help provide cheap credit to petty traders.
His statement however contradicts the position of Mrs. Aisha Buhari, the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who recently criticised the SIP, saying that N500billion was plunged into it with nothing to show.
Speaking further, Osinbajo urged the group to do business in Nigeria.
“If you are going to do business anywhere in Africa, it has to be Nigeria.
“This is where you have the energy; you have the drive.
“We are already seeing that kind of activity; business people will always be driven by profit.
“Talent will always go in the direction where it is best rewarded; one can’t afford to be sentimental about that.
“As people see that the environment is getting better for business, they will come back; the opportunities for making huge profits are here.
“Practically everything we are doing in to ensure that there is environment for business to thrive. People are leaving but people are coming back.’’
“In the next few months, we will unveil a plan that deals with most of the critical issues in the power sector,’’ he said.
Ibrahim Kenneth Suleiman is the Chief Political Editor at Naija Buzz News Network. He is a graduate of political science from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Kaduna State. He specializes in preparing/approving of political news contents before publication. He currently heads Naija Buzz News team of political correspondents. From Nasarawa State, North-Central Nigeria, Ibrahim is a strong supporter of Manchester United Football Club England.