The founder of National Interest Movement, a non-partisan civil society platform, Dr Sakara Foster, has advocated a long term national development plan in order to ensure progress, growth and development for the citizenry.
He explained that the trend where one group of people form a government and implement a particular plan only for another set of people to take over to also come with their own plan was not helping the country.
“The nation is faced with a crisis situation which must be contained – accept and admit that a group of people in the country cannot solve the challenges but we have to come together, build consensus, face reality and come up with long-term plan through reformed development agenda that looks at the fundamentals,” Dr Foster suggested
According to him, among the challenges facing the country was the poor performance of the local currency against the dollar and high inflation rate at 32.7 per cent which calls for national consultative dialogue to surmount.
Dr Foster, said the nation had reached a point where ideas of political parties alone could not solve its challenges but drastic situation required drastic measures since a group of people could not solve the problems but needed fundamental reform to the 1992 Constitution to bind governments to go by long-term national development plan for inclusive and sustainable growth and development.
“We must shift from the attitude of borrowing to spend to having prudent and fiscally disciplined economy that invests in agriculture and manufacturing to grow the economy and adjust trade and investment policies into the sectors with underlying conveyor belt to transition small-scale farms and agribusinesses into medium-scale and large-scale in the long-term,” he indicated.
Mr Martin Kpebu, a legal practitioner, said the state should take all necessary action to ensure the national economy was managed to maximise rate of economic development, secure maximum welfare, freedom, happiness of every person, provide adequate means of livelihood, suitable employment and public assistance and support to the needy.
He said the government had admitted to the economic hardships but the lack of confident measures taken, ongoing negotiations with the International Monetary Fund for a loan support and assistance programme may not be able to help alleviate the sufferings of the citizenry in the shortest time possible.