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FACT CHECK: Did Lai say the whole truth in response to Obasanjo?

FACT CHECK: Did Lai say the whole truth in response to Obasanjo?
January 26
09:31 2018
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Olusegun Obasanjo, former president, shocked the world on Tuesday when he warned President Muhammadu Buhari against contesting in 2019. The former president, who was one of Buhari’s supporters during the 2015 elections, said the president had performed below expectation.

After the federal executive council meeting on Wednesday, Lai Mohammed, minister of information, culture and tourism, responded to the letter with what he claimed were achievements of the Buhari administration.

Were all the claims made by the minister true?

CLAIM 1: FOREIGN RESERVES AT $40 BILLION

True. On January 9, the Central Bank of Nigeria said the foreign reserves stood at $40.4 billion as at January 5.

CLAIM 2: INFLATION AT 15.37%, MET AND SURPASSED ERGP’s TARGET

True and False. While it is true that inflation slowed to 15.37% in December 2017, it is false that it has met and surpassed the target set in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. The target set by the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration in the ERGP for the end of 2017 was that inflation would slow to 15%.

CLAIM 3: N108 BILLION SAVED USING TSA, N24.7 BILLION SAVED MONTHLY FROM FULL IMPLEMENTATION OF TSA.

True and false. In August 2017, Ahmed Idris, the accountant general of the federation, said using treasury single account has saved the federal government N108.1 billion from charges imposed by banks for managing funds belonging to its ministries, departments and agencies.

“The TSA has taken us out of the era of indiscriminate borrowings by the MDAs and saved government the charges associated with those borrowings, which hitherto amounted to N4.7bn monthly,” he said at that time.

CLAIM 4: CAPITAL INFLOWS HIT $1.8BN IN Q2 2017

True. According to the Q2 Capital Importation Inflow released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the estimated total value of capital imported into Nigeria in the second quarter of 2017 was $1.79 billion.

CLAIM 5: NSE ONE OF THE BEST PERFORMING IN THE WORLD

True. In December 2017, S&P Dow Jones Indices listed the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) as one of the best five stock exchanges globally.

CLAIM 6: NIGERIA MOVED 24 PLACES ON EASE OF DOING BUSINESS

True. In 2017, Nigeria moved 24 places on the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business ranking. The World Bank also ranked Nigeria among 10 most improved economies in the world.

CLAIM 7: INCREASED EXPORTS, REDUCED RICE IMPORTS

True. The export figures provided by the minister are corrected according to the Q3 Foreign Trade Statistics report released by the NBS. However, Nigeria’s rice import figure for 2017 is 23,192 metric tonnes and not 22,000 metric tonnes as claimed by the minister.

CLAIM 8: POWER GENERATION AND TRANSMISSION AT 7,000MW

False. In 2o17, Babatunde Fashola, minister of power, confirmed that the country was generating 6,800MW of electricity but it is false that the nation can transmit all. In December 2017, the Transmission Company of Nigeria confirmed that the country was transmitting 5,222 MW, which is the highest in the country’s history.

CLAIM 9: RAIL LINES READY

Can’t be verified. This is because the Lagos-Ibadan and Kano-Kaduna railways are works in progress. Also, the bookings for the Lagos to Kano rail which the minister claims is on is not available on the Nigerian Railway Corporation website.

CLAIM 10: 25 ROADS FUNDED BY SUKUK

True. In 2017, the federal government issued a N100 billion Sukuk to fund the construction 25 economic roads. The proceeds have since been handed over to Babatunde Fashola, minister of works, who will oversee the project.

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1 Comment

  1. oxbee
    oxbee January 26, 10:13

    Why should federal government fund our economic road with sukuk? Do they plan to sell the entire to the Islamic world? God will save our country. The invasion of the bond woman will meet its water loo by His grace.

    Reply to this comment

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