Unic Press UK: The Nigerian government on Friday denied allegations that President Muhammadu Buhari told the President of the World Bank Group to channel the resources of the financial institution in the northern region alone.
In a press statement Friday, the 13th October 2017, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, said:
“The truth of the matter is that President Buhari, right from his first week in office in June, 2015, had reached out to the G-7 in Germany that Nigeria needed help to rebuild the North-east, which had been terribly devastated by insurgency. He said the country would prefer help in terms of rebuilding of infrastructure, rather than cash donation, which may end up being misappropriated. In concert with Governors of the region, a comprehensive list of needed repairs was sent to the G-7 leaders. Also, during a trip to Washington in 2015, and many other engagements that followed, President Buhari sought the help of the World Bank in rebuilding the beleaguered North-east, which was then being wrested from the stranglehold of a pernicious insurgency. It was something always done in the open…”
A transcript ‘World Bank Group Opening Press Conference by President Jim Yong Kim at the 2017 WBG/IMF Annual Meetings’ which was seen by Unic Press UK, actually reads that during Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and the World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, a request was made that the global financial institution should focus on the northern region. In the transcript, a representative of the Thisday Newspapers [a media organization in Nigeria] and The Rise TV, had put a question to Jim Yong Kim:
“Mr. Kim, what can you tell us about Nigeria, specifically your intervention in the power sector, and also, what is the World Bank doing to support those ravaged in the northeastern part of Nigeria by the Boko Haram terrorists”?
Jim Yong Kim replied:
“You know, in my very first meeting with President Buhari he said, specifically, that he would like us to shift our focus to the northern regions of Nigeria, and we’ve done that. Now, it’s been very difficult. The work there has been very, very difficult… Nigeria has to think ahead. And investing in its people, investing in the things that will allow Nigeria to be a thriving, rapidly growing economy in the future is what the country has to focus on right now… we need to really think about another kind of path to economic growth that’s very focused on a small- to medium-enterprises and entrepreneurship…”