• Tuesday, June 25, 2024
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BusinessDay

Insecurity was Nigeria’s biggest challenge in 2021 – Lai Mohammed

Saraki’s defection won’t affect APC’s fortunes in 2019 – Minister

Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, on Thursday said insecurity was the biggest challenge that President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration tackled in 2021.

The Minister however scored Buhari’s effort in tackling insecurity high as well as other sectors such as transportation, and overall economic growth.

“Let me admit straight away that the year has not been devoid of challenges. For the outgoing year in particular, the major challenge has been that of insecurity, Mohammed said while giving a breakdown of Buhari’s achievement in 2021 in Lagos.

Mohammed recalled the Nigeria Air Force took delivery of 12 Super Tucanos and three fighter jets, with which it has conducted several air interdictions.

He added that no fewer than 10,000 Nigerians were recruited into the Nigeria Army in the year.

He also mentioned that combination of kinetic and non-kinetic operations, coupled with a review of strategies, led to the neutralization of over 1000 terrorists, rescue of 2000 civilians and the surrender of over 22,000 terrorists including their families.

According to him, 2021 has seen a significant leap in Nigeria’s insecurity challenges with banditry, kidnappings, and herders-farmers killing leading the pack.

Read also: Insecurity: Recall retired officers, Afenifere tells Buhari

The minister also said Nigeria has partnered with China to acquire equipment worth $44 million to help the Nigeria police force and improve security.

The Minister further said the recovery of the economy remained on a steady path throughout the year 2021. “For example, the country’s domestic growth in the first three quarters of 2021 was positive, recording real GDP of 0.51 percent in Q1, 5.01 percent in Q2 and 4.03 percent in Q3 2021,

“This was an improvement from a declining performance in the first three
quarters of 2020 (which led to economic recession) at 1.87 percent in Q1, -6.10 percent in Q2 and -3.62 percent in Q3 2020,” he added.

According to Mohammed, this economic performance in 2021 shows a steady improvement in growth over the last three quarters of 2020 arising from government policies and strategies such as the Economic Sustainability Plan; N500 billion COVID-19 Crisis Intervention Fund etc.

He also said inflation rate has continued to decline on a year-on-year basis since April 2021 when 18.12 percent was recorded, adding that a declining rate was recorded from 17.93 percent in May to 17.01 percent in August, 15.99 percent in October and 15.40 percent in November 2021.