Senator Smart Adeyemi, yesterday, warned Nigerians and the people of Kogi State of an impending economic downturn in the country in the days ahead and took a swipe at his former party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for failing to heed his advice to diversify the economy in the days of economic boom.
The senator, who represents Kogi West Senatorial District, made the assertions in his hometown, Iyara, Ijumu Local Council, Kogi State during the distribution of the second batch of COVID-19 palliatives to the people.
According to him, two trailer loads of beans were distributed to beneficiaries, mostly women, to augment the initial two trailer loads of Rice donated five weeks ago.
Beneficiaries included members of the running All Progressives Congress (APC), other political parties, the Hausa/Fulani and Igbo Communities, Tiv and Ebira as well as Yoruba from the South West states living in Kogi West.
Addressing reporters during the event, Adeyemi said the world was in recession and predicted that with the drastic drop in oil prices, the federal government may find itself in a situation where it may be unable to pay salaries, saying similar fate awaited Kogi State Government workers.
According to the APC senator, “It is not as if we are moving into recession. We are already in recession, the world is in recession, let nobody make mistake about it. We passed the budget in December and put the benchmark at 57 dollars per barrel. Today, it is less than 27 dollars. Tell me where Nigeria will get money to spend.
“Unfortunately Nigeria is a country where people easily forget the past. When one government was in power, oil was selling at N150. It did not diversify the economy. By the time Buhari came, it came as low as 22 dollars per barrel. I stood on the floor of the Senate to say severally that the government at the time was not diversifying the economy. I was in the PDP then. They were wasting the resources. I warned that, a time would come when oil will sell for as low as 30 dollars per barrel. See what is happening today. So, don’t blame Buhari if the federal government is unable to pay salaries. Kogi people should not blame Governor Yahaya Bello if he is unable to pay salaries.”
He said the decision to distribute the second batch of palliative was upon discovery that the first batch was not enough, adding that the palliatives were necessary to augment the efforts of the state government.