ABUJA – Amb. Martin Uhomoibhi, outgoing Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said on Thursday that Nigeria’s economic growth rate had been steady despite the insurgency.
Uhomoibhi said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the side line of an event organised in his honour by the African Diplomatic Corps in Abuja.
He commended the efforts of the military to curb the spread of terrorism in the country.
“Terrorism is a challenge, it’s not a Nigerian problem, it’s a global challenge but Nigeria is attacking it from a uniquely Nigerian perspective.
“We are pursuing a whole of government approach using what we call `the carrot and stick approach’ to deal with it and I bet you, evil can never overcome good.
“The sheer size and the determination of the Nigerian people, the commitment of our leaders to that target is unmistakable and we will, with the collaboration and support of the world, deal with terrorism.
“If you look at the history all over the world what is happening is not new.
“It is naïve to think that terrorism can be dealt with in 24 hours; Nigeria is dealing with it in our development strategy.
“Nigeria is achieving 7.4 per cent growth of the GDP (Gross Domestic Products) every year for six years consecutively in spite of terrorism.
“There is no nation on earth that has battled terrorism and maintained a GDP growth.
“Nigeria has emerged as the biggest economy in the continent; emerged as the second most entertaining industry in the world.
“It is the latest kid on the block as one of the most attractive investment destination in the world.
“Look at what Nigeria is doing; rather than what it is not doing. With this, terrorism will pass.”
He also called urged Nigerians not to relent in the fight against terrorism.
On his legacies, Uhomoibhi said there were measures in place to ensure “a core of officers who can lead the ministry in the next 10 years”.
He said serving in the ministry had made him part of a process of “contributing meaningfully to the growth of the country” by creating training programmes for mid-level career diplomats.
“We train the minds of these young people to let them know what is dear to our country; how to treasure what we have; to learn to respect themselves and others; learn to produce, and achieve great heights in whatever assignments they are given to fulfill
Also speaking, Amb. Marie-Louise Kombe, Ambassador of the Democratic Republic of Congo to Nigeria, commended the support Uhomoibhi had given the diplomatic community in Nigeria.
“His door was always open and he always had a solution; he has made our stay here very easy.
“He has played a vital role in facilitating the relations we all share; he will be missed.”