Elder Statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai; former Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria and Convener To Build a Nation, Prof. Kingsley Moghalu; and Founder and Group CEO of IPI Group, Adamu Jauro Garba II, will converge on Friday to brainstorm on the impact of the Coronavirus Disease on the nation’s economy and whether the current political structure is addressing the problem.
The conference is scheduled to hold on May 15, 2020 through video conference, with the theme: “The Coronavirus pandemic: Is it time to re-evaluate the political structure?”
In a statement signed by the Conference organisers’ Spokesman, Maazi Tochukwu Ezeoke, the group stated that the outbreak of COVID-19 in China has rapidly permeated and profoundly changed the world.
Ezeoke said: “Economies around the world are fighting the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, not least in Nigeria, which was already tackling its own fiscal challenges.
“While this crisis is first and foremost a public health issue, which has claimed the lives of about 300,000 people worldwide, and counting, the economic damages are unprecedented on several fronts: crude oil prices have declined dramatically.
“These outcomes have expectedly thrown the global economy into a recession, the depth and duration of which is currently difficult to fathom.”
Asking: “What the economic impact of COVID-19 in Nigeria will be,” the statement added: “Nigeria is still dependent on oil, so the current crash in oil prices is adding to the COVID-19 lockdown effect where people stop spending.
“The Nigerian government is projecting revenue flow from oil to decline from N5.5 trillion in 2020 to N1.1 trillion, so we have a sudden fiscal crisis in Nigeria presenting some pretty immense economic challenges.
“The impact will be felt across all sectors because of the country-wide lockdown, there are concerns around overall economic activity in sectors like retail and real estate, and how banks adjust to that.
“Around the world, countries have moved away from multilateralism and responded by fighting for themselves with several measures to protect their own people and economies, regardless of the spill over effects on the rest of the world.
“Nigeria has reacted by directing lockdowns and palliatives. But it is evident that the federal government cannot cope, the state governments are nowhere to be found, and the local government system has collapsed.
“The crisis offers us an opportunity to ask: is our current federal system of governance fit for purpose?
“The conference will explore the lessons we could learn from the COVID-19 crisis and whether it presents us with an opportunity to revisit and re-evaluate the structure of government for the benefit of our people.”