Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, says President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is on the right track and there is no alternative to what it is doing.
Mohammed said this at a meeting with the members of staff of the Nigerian Embassy in Madrid, Spain.
The meeting was on the sidelines of the minister’s two-day official visit to the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
“I believe that we are on the right track; there will be some pains, but there is no alternative to what we are doing,” he said.
Mohammed said the administration had fulfilled its campaign promises to address insecurity, fix the economy and fight corruption.
In the area of security, the minister said that when Buhari came on board, 14 of the 20 local government areas of Borno, four in Adamawa and three in Yobe were under the sovereign authority of Boko Haram.
He said with proactive measures and soft diplomacy with neighbouring African countries, the US, France and the G-8 had helped the country to “decisively deal with Book Haram”.
“Today, all the major highways leading to Maiduguri are opened and about two months ago, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) played a league match in Maiduguri stadium,” he said.
On the renewed agitations in the Niger-Delta region and parts of the south-east, the minister said the government would not marginalise any part of the country, saying economic development would go round to everyone.
Mohammed said the current administration is implementing fiscal discipline and other measures to address the messed-up economy it inherited from its predecessors.
He said with the temporarily painful measures, the government would turn around the adversity to gains and ensure that never again would the nation run a corrupt, clueless and an oil-dependent economy.
The minister said the administration had been unfairly accused of placing too much emphasis on the fight against corruption at the expense of addressing fundamental economic issues.
He said no amount of economic reforms put in place could work unless the “monster of corruption is successfully dealt with”.
Mohammed said the administration’s fight against corruption was not selective, and that the government was not probing the 2015 elections campaign funds of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He added that that the government would continue to remain focus in its efforts to rebuild the country.
Sola Akinlude, minister consular of the embassy, who conducted the minister round the embassy, said the official population of Nigerians resident in Spain is about 100,000.