By Maureen Okon
Abuja – Former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, has called on Nigerians in the diaspora to invest in the country.
Soludo spoke at the Nigeria Diaspora Investment Summit 2019, which was organised by the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM).
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the summit was held at the Presidential Villa Abuja, with the theme: “Leveraging Diaspora Resources for Economic Growth.”
Soludo, who was the keynote Speaker at the summit, said that investment in Nigeria should not be seen as charity but to be seen as a duty and responsibility of all.
He added that for any country to leverage its resources for economic growth, it required development and empowerment of its homelands.
He also noted that creation of enabling environment was key in developmental strategy and also the utilisation of human capital.
“Our duty as a marginal contributor in a fast growing economy is to contribute in a place where your skills and professionalism is required.
“Diaspora on the average has the highest education and skills compared to the person in the homeland.
“We are calling on all Nigerians in the diaspora to come and develop our economy to an enviable height,” Soludo said.
He, however, said that in a time where racism, xenophobia and terrorism is on the increase, there is need to create an enabling environment in ensuring a prosperous homeland.
“Capital is not colour neutral, so having one that looks like you is important and that is why we need to develop our homeland and make it stronger.
“For example, the Americans have to throw massive resources both in human capital and otherwise for their homeland to be strong and that has made it attractive for foreigners to invest.
“Nigerians have to develop her human capital and have a strategy on the export coming from abroad and within to evaluate her population.
“Our human capital in years to come is going to be bigger than oil, because Nigeria has a huge financial and human capital,” he said.
He, therefore, urged government at all levels to work hard and change the narrative by turning human capital into money making machine.
Responding, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman of NIDCOM, said the commission’s objectives was to create a platform where diaspora investors could interact with other potential sponsor, partners, business promoters and the government.
Dabiri-Ewera said it was an avenue to call on Nigerians in diaspora to invest in their homeland.
She added that the platform would showcase and explore the business and sponsorship opportunities in all the 36 state for Diaspora investment.
She reiterated government‘s commitment for all investors in ensuring that Nigeria became an investment haven.