…As Envoy begs Nigerians in Canada: Remember, to give back to Nigeria***
Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele on Sunday left Nigeria for Washington DC to join other economic experts, from around the world, to discuss issues affecting global economy.
Discussions would take place under the auspices of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The Spring Meetings of the IMF and the World Bank will bring together central bankers, ministers of finance and development, parliamentarians, private sector executives, representatives from civil society organizations and the academia.
The experts will discuss issues of global concern, including the world economic outlook, poverty eradication, economic development and aid effectiveness.
There will also be seminars, regional briefings, press conferences and many other events with focus on global economy, international development and the world’s financial system.
The meetings will hold between April 16 and April 22, 2018.
Nigeria attends the meeting each year because of the quantum of investments and assistance it receives from both the IMF and the World Bank.
Although Nigeria currently has zero loans with the IMF, it enjoys technical support from the organisation.
The World Bank Group on the other hand is helping to fight poverty and improve living standards in the country through 33 Core Knowledge Product Reports and 29 ongoing National and Regional projects.
This is in addition to about 60 Trust Funds.
The World Bank Group since 1958 supported Nigeria with loans and International Development Association (IDA) credits worth about 14.2 billion dollars.
The group in 2017 fiscal year alone committed 1.51 billion dollars to the country and so far in 2018, it already spent 486 million dollars on different development projects across the country.
Some of the projects include Electricity Transmission Project, Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support Project, Polio Eradication Support Project and Housing Finance Development Programme, among others.
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Canada, Amb. Adeyinka Asekun has urged Nigerians in Canada to always remember their country and give back towards advancement. He however did not say anything on what the country would do for them.
Asekun made the observation at the 2018 Canada edition of Nigeria Conversation, in Ottawa, saying every Nigerian in Diaspora had something to give, no matter how little.
“On this note, I wish to avail myself of the opportunity of this platform to reiterate the High Commission’s philosophy of ‘Giving Back’.
“By this, Nigerians in Canada are encouraged to always remember your country of origin and try to ‘give back’ towards its advancement and development.
“It should be noted that one of the best ways of ‘giving back’ is to offer well thought out ideas that can improve the state of our nation.
“I, therefore, urge you to feel free to bring forth, out of your experiences in Canada, those ideas that are needed to impact positively on our country.
“This is to bring about improvement in as many areas as possible”.
Asekun said ‘Nigeria Conversation’ was essentially aimed at promoting inclusive governance by engaging Nigerians, both at home and diaspora on issues of nation-building and national development.
According to him, it is, therefore, to provide Nigerians in Canada a veritable platform for the presentation on topical issues of national importance.
The High Commissioner added that the conversation was also to interact with Nigerians resident in Canada and to obtain their views on issues affecting the Homeland.
Earlier in his remarks, Chairman of Nigeria Conversation, Mr Blackson Bayewumi, described Nigeria as a world-class country and Nigerians, world-class people.
Bayewumi said the conversation was aimed at engaging Nigerians in Canada on the investment and trade facilitation back home.
He said it was also to engage Nigerians about the government’s economic diversification, consolidation and sustainability as well as the way forward at ensuring the sustainable development of the country.
According to him, however, Nigerians need to ask themselves and answer the question: “What are we doing now as a nation that we can do better?”
Bayewumi said Nigerians also need to ask and answer: “What are we doing now as a nation that we need to stop doing?”
He further said the Nigerians should ask and answer: “what are we not doing as a nation that we need to start doing?”
He said the Conversation was a citizenship mainstreaming initiative, which positively and productively engaged Nigerians both home and abroad on nation’s building processes and national development.
Bayewumi said the conversation, which had held in major cities in Nigeria and across the world, would have its findings and recommendations presented to the relevant authorities for consideration and implementation.
Chris Nonis, former Chairperson, Board of Governors of the Commonwealth Secretariat, in a goodwill message, said the conversation provided an opportunity for Nigerian diaspora to unite and assist their motherland.
“Nigeria today is a microcosm of the contemporary Commonwealth, in terms of its cultural, religious and linguistic diversity.
“The compelling imperative is to recognise that the true wealth of Nigeria is this diversity, and one needs to harness this diversity and not be afraid of it,” Nonis said.