I thank the organizers of the 2018 NIHOTOUR MASTER LECTURE SERIES for asking me to be guest speaker today. As a guest speaker, I have a duty to challenge all of you. You are more qualified in many areas than I can ever claim to be but I must bring out an area that is often neglected when issues of men, money and materials are discussed.
I am to speak on a Safe Destination as a Panacea for Foreign Direct Investment. I have some material for this purpose. One of them is the speech prepared for this occasion but which I suggest the organizers may want to distribute. The speech defines a destination and focuses on Nigeria as the destination we want to promote. The paper then tells what Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) means, Nigeria as a destination; the safety status of the country, government deliberate policies for investment, impact of Foreign Direct Investment on the economy of a destination, Investment comparative analysis, and conclusions and recommendations. All those are discussed on pages 2-10 of the paper.
I also accessed material which you all can google and download. They include
- Federal Republic of Nigeria – Economic Recovery and Growth Plan 2017 – 2020; Ministry of Budget &Planning.
- Deloitte’s July 2018 Invest in Nigeria which says that recent reforms in the country foster recovery, invoking the potential for West Africa’s economic power house.
- Nigeria: Foreign Investment – Showing graphically FDI in figures, country comparison for the protection of Investment; what to consider if you invest in Nigeria and Procedures Relative to foreign Investment, see https://en.portal.sandandertrade-com/establish-overseas/nigeria/investing.
- Regulatory framework for Foreign Investment In Nigeria by Michael Orimobi – https://punching.com/regulatory-framework-for-foreign-investment-in-nigeria.
- Top Investment Opportunities in Nigeria by Standard Bank Dec 5, 2017 – lists areas like manufacturing, information and communication technology services, agriculture and Private Education. https://guardian/business-services/business/top-investment-opportunities-in-nigeria.
- Impact of Insurgency on Foreign Direct Investment in Nigeria by Obiekwe Onyebuchi, Dept. of Management, Rivers State University, Port Harcourt – International Journal of Operational Research in Management, Social Sciences & Education, June 2018 Vol 4 No 1.
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, as you will discover when you have time to examine the literature on Nigeria as a destination, safe or not safe, there is something about destinations you may sense is missing. And this is what I want to address here now.
It is the challenge we must accept so that we can with confidence locate where even distractions on our journey of growth and development are. We must present a picture of man and his sojourn here on earth and what he must do in a particular location he finds himself.
I belong in a school of thought that draws attention to the truth that man is created and is on earth to attend the school of life… He is a personality whose identity is personal. The proof is his/her finger print. It cannot be replicated. He came from his home in Paradise and will go back to that home, paradise. Yes, you can replicate his body which is no more than a cloak he wears on earth, but it is impossible to reproduce the wearer. Those who speak of people being cloaned are ignorant and claiming to be God. Only God creates.
The earth is the destination in the material creation where man can develop his talents. He uses the resources on earth to do so – land, machines and money. For man to fully perform his role, he must have a destination in mind – a place he must go to if he must grow. That place should be so developed that it becomes a magnetising force. You don’t go there because you blindly grope in that direction. You are drawn there even if you don’t want to go.
It is like Dubai for a holiday, like Jerusalem for Christian Pilgrimage and like Mecca for Muslim pilgrim. It is like going to the United State in search of the green card or risking the dangers in the desert to access the ways of reaching out to the pastures in Europe.
You all have the challenge to make Nigeria the Safe destination it must be for the roads of the world to lead here. All the material and natural endowments are already here. Even the Spiritual which I will explain as the attraction that must dominate all the rest.
Nigeria has all the six ecological zones of the tropics from the sea and mangrove swamps of the South through the rain forests and the savannah to the desert in the North. There are even temperate conditions inPlateau and Taraba States. I heard on a BBC programme that the best roses in the world are grown on the Plateau. You all know thatthe sweetest oil comes from the Niger Delta, that there is hardly any mineral anywhere in the world that is not in Nigeria.
Nigeria is naturally prevented from natural disasters. The fault linesin the Americas and the pacific islands that experience earth quakes are stories we read or news we watch on television.
Nigeria is God’s own country. It is the only federation packaged in the first quarter of the last century that is still standing. All others have collapsed. This integrated space has a population that can be brought together through political engineering. I have addressed how this can be done in my little book ‘To Save Nigeria Let’s Talk’. Until we do something in that direction we will remain the world’s only example of a country where democracy is not a luxury of development. in the world over, people channel their resources to growing their economy and access that quantum of freedom that will sustain growth. Here, we spend more money on governance than growing the polity.
And what of the people! Nigeria has the largest concentration of the souls in black bodies on earth. Every racial group has its own contribution to growing this earth which is the meeting place of the good, the bad and the ugly. I have tried to group human beings in three in their striving on the road that leads to their home in Paradise. There are three ladder to climb – material, intellectual and spiritual. Do you belong in the Sim group, the rim group or the mis group?
- Sim is Spiritual Intellectual and Material.
- Rim is Religious Intellectual and Material.
- Mis is Material, Intellectual and Spiritual.
Most of mankind are rummaging the material, being as they are, dominated by the intellect, by those who believe that they are the products of thought – cogito ego sum. The next largest group is the RIM – Religious, Intellectual and material, in that order. Instead of being spiritual,they are trapped in their dogma.So today; we have more trouble on earth in spite of more Christians and Muslims on earth than any other time in history and more Churches and Mosques on earth than any other time in history!
All of us must strive to be the Sim cards we are meant to be – operate on earth by accepting that we are not natives of here. We are not the outcome of our thoughts, as western indoctrination has entrenched. We are spirit, in the material to grow. We are aliens on earth.
The single group on earth that stands in this recognition is the soul in the black body, Nigeria is the centre from which he shines out. That is why there is so much agitation where the Nigerian is active – in any sphere of life anywhere in the world. Look for the Nigerian in the Churches, in academia, in the sciences, anywhere life is manifested on earth. He is there, and shines.
Today, you find him dominating the arts. He is unique in how he manifests life in the environment he lives in: Watch the films that dominate the waves everywhere, the dresses that have shown how the monotony in dressing has been tamed. Go to the YouTube and see what Nigerians are doing with music and comedy.
And look at the educational institutions that are nothing to write home about. When any of their products go to the ivy institutions abroad, they dominate the environment within months. Why, they download from outside the material and the intellectual. Here are people knocking on the door of paradise, the spiritual and growing into the new breed that will populate the earth and lead the world in recognitions that man is created and is in a school where he must be reminded of the endowments of the spirit that knows giving, not continue to be nourished on the limitations of the intellect that knows only taking.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I told you I would bring into the search for a safe destination for foreign direct investments, a dimension that would extend the frontier of destinations.In this presentation I have directed your attention to where we are at on earth in seeking investments. Our movement in recognitions of the way humans take over the management of resources will open vistas that will prove that we are sim cards in creation which will help to give of what we have than continue to sustain a regime that has entrenched taking as a way of life.
I thank you, ladies and gentlemen, for your attention.
Being speech given on Thursday December 6, 2018 at the Nihotour 2018 Annual Master Lecture Series held in the Auditorium of Public Service Institute, FCT Abuja
Prince Tony Momoh,
Former Minister of Information & Culture.
Pro-chancellor & Chairman Governing Council, University of Jos.
Member, APC BOT.
Yerima, Auchi kingdom.