Full Text of President Buhari’s Speech During Presentation of 2017 Budget (READ)

Buhari
Nigeria’s President on Wednesday presented the 2017 Appropriation Bill before a joint session of the National Assembly.




Muhammadu Buhari
Buhari, during the presentation said his administration will pay more attention to infrastructures with roads and rail projects taking centre in the incoming year.

See full text below:
Protocols
1. It is my pleasure to present the 2017 Budget Proposals to this distinguished Joint Assembly: the Budget of Recovery and Growth.
2. We propose that the implementation of the Budget will be based on our Economic Recovery and Growth Strategy. The Plan, which builds on our 2016 Budget, provides a clear road map of policy actions and steps designed to bring the economy out of recession and to a path of steady growth and prosperity.
3. We continue to face the most challenging economic situation in the history of our Nation. Nearly every home and nearly every business in Nigeria is affected one way or the other.

4. Yet I remain convinced that this is also a time of great opportunity.We have reached a stage when the creativity, talents and resilience of the Nigerian people is being rewarded. Those courageous and patriotic men and women who believed in Nigeria are now seeing the benefits gradually come to fruition. I am talking about the farmers who today are experiencing bumper harvests, the manufacturers who substituted imported goods for local materials and the car assembly companies who today are expanding to meet higher demand.

5. Distinguished members of National Assembly, for the record:For many years we depended on oil for foreign exchange revenues. In the days of high oil prices,we did not save.We squandered.

6. We wasted our large foreign exchange reserves to import nearly everything we consume. Our food, Our clothing, Our manufacturing inputs, Our fuel and much more.In the past 18 months when we experienced low oil prices, we saw our foreign exchange earnings cut by about 60%, our reserves eroded and our consumption declined as we could not import to meet our needs.

7. By importing nearly everything, we provide jobs for young men and women in the countries that produce what we import, while our own young people wander around jobless. By preferring imported goods, we ensure steady jobs for the nationals of other countries, while our own farmers, manufacturers, engineers, and marketers, remain jobless.

8. I will stand my ground and maintain my position that under my watch, that old Nigeria is slowly but surely disappearing and a new era is rising in which we grow what we eat and consume what we make.
We will CHANGE our habits and we will CHANGE Nigeria.

9. By this simple principle, we will increasingly grow and process our own food, we will manufacture what we can and refine our own petroleum products. We will buy ‘Made in Nigeria’ goods. We will encourage garment manufacturing and Nigerian designers, tailors and fashion retailers. We will patronize local entrepreneurs. We will promote the manufacturing powerhouses in Aba, Calabar, Kaduna, Kano, Lagos, Nnewi, Onitsha, and Ota. From light manufacturing to cement production and petrochemicals, our objective is to make Nigeria a new manufacturing hub.

10. Today, the demand of the urban consumer has presented an opportunity for the rural producer. Across the country, our farmers, traders and transporters are seeing a shift in their fortunes. Nigerians who preferred imported products are now consuming made in Nigeria products. From Argungu in Kebbi to Abakalaki in Ebonyi, rice farmers and millers are seeing their products move. We must replicate such success in other staples like wheat, sugar, soya, tomato and dairy products. Already, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Organised Private Sector and a handful of Nigerian commercial banks, have embarked on an ambitious private sector-led N600 billion program to push us towards self-sufficiency in three years for these products. I hereby ma

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