President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday night explained why he had been consistent in blaming past administrations for the nation’s current economic mess.
He said he had to do that because he had given high electoral promises in the hope that the nation had some good savings only to find that all the money made over the years had been squandered by successive governments.
Buhari who spoke at an interactive session during the public presentation of a pictorial book titled “Buhari A New Beginning,’’ expressed regret that despite the reckless spendings by successive administrations, the infrastructure gap was still yawning. Accordingly, he urged the Nigerian youth to be vigilant and watch the elite very carefully because, according to him, they would not always tell them the truth about the state of the nation.
He said: “My dear countrymen, especially the youth, you have a fantastic country. God has endowed Nigeria with human and material resources.
“I’m going to bore you with what we met. I know I’m being accused in the papers of passing the buck, but passing the buck is sometimes absolutely necessary, to remind people who take things for granted.
“When we came in, by some unfortunate coincidence, I screamed to high heavens because I had promised a lot seeking vote. I said where is the savings? There was no savings, there was no infrastructure, power, rails, roads, there was none. What did we spend the money on?
“I was told buying food and petrol. where were the billions going? We conducted a study and found out that the oil marketers were committing fraud on at least one third of what they were importing, which is about 25 per cent of our foreign exchange.
“The youths must watch our elites. The condition we found ourselves, it is unpatriotic for anybody to pretend that economically we have not a problem.
We have gone into the farms. I congratulate some of the governors and by the grace of God by the end of this government we will be exporting rice and grains.
“So, all the money alleged to have been used to import will be available to sustain development.