The false hope of buying Nigerian to grow the naira

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Buying Nigerian

During exam periods, students study to pass in order to become productive and responsible citizens. While some students study to pass, others relax because they belong to the examiner’s league of sycophants or bribers. Also, some lecturers attach payments for handouts, projects and ‘sorting’ as conditions for passing their exams. Since people can pass without studying, the system will discourage studying hard as a condition for success. Likewise, if it is possible or easier for people to get wealth without contributing directly or indirectly to local productivity, the system will discourage local productivity. So, the hype of buying Nigerian to grow the naira, without supporting policies for local technical productivity is hypocritical.

 

Some government officials emphasize the need for buying Nigerian made products in order to increase the naira value.[1] While parading the idea of buying Nigerian to grow the naira, they mainly patronize foreign products. They spend on foreign hospitals, schools, vacations, wears, foods, perfumes, estates, vehicles and drinks without supporting local productivity. Such malpractice rise from a country’s pattern of generating and disbursing funds: ‘if a country generates funds from taxing the people’s income from material productivity, local productivity grows. But if it generates funds by seizing and exporting the resources people could use for production, local productivity dies’.

 

Real wealth is created by applying scientific knowledge on agricultural products and mineral resources to produce useful items[2] like food, clothes, houses, vehicles, factories, tools, schools, books, gadgets, and churches.[3] While agricultural products serve more in quick-perishable products, mineral resources serve in more durable products and machines for further productivity. And even agricultural products depend on tools from mineral resources for their cultivation, processing, preservation and distribution.

 

Central banks create money by making loans for people who already have credits – potentials to create wealth or support wealth-creation. “Credit is something a man already has… marketable assets of a greater cash value than the loan for which he is asking”[4] like land, resources, innovative ideas, credible reputation or career.[5] The loans enable credit-owners to gather labour and resources for developing products or services for profit. By giving loans to many citizens with potentials (credits) for creating wealth, central banks enable local productivity and industrialization. Then productive citizens compete to employ people to produce and trade their goods and production-support services.

 

Creative ideas and labour can only become credits when they have resources to fulfil their ability to create wealth. However, when a government seizes and exports the resources people need for creating wealth, it transfers the credit for locally creating wealth to credit for importing foreign goods. And government will need to pay (foreign products) to people to suppress, blame or distract[6] the people who are denied production credits. Thus, people will mainly get loans for importing and distributing foreign products for the few government’s direct and indirect assistants. Then the remaining people, without government connection, are urged to survive as artisans depending on primitive agriculture and crafts.

 

This is what happens in Nigeria and many other African countries following the colonial imposition of indirect rule on different unconsented peoples for using some groups to exploit other people’s resources.

 

“The scanty social services (foreign products) were meant only to facilitate exploitation, they were not given to any Africans whose labour was not directly producing surplus for export to Europe.”[7]

 

If government assistants don’t get funds from seized resources to purchase foreign products, they will be forced to produce and trade items within. But as long as there is easy fund from exporting seized resources, there will be no intrinsic compulsion for local productivity. Then, buying Nigerian to grow the naira will remain a false parade for those without government connection.

 

A true naira growth may not happen until there is a social reorganization for people to earn through creating wealth, instead of depending on seized resource revenue for purchasing foreign products. Some steps in this reorganization may include:

 

  • Conduct a social research to determine and acknowledge the different colonially-bound peoples and their respective lands and resources, instead of holding to the colonial idea of an alien government ownership of all lands and resources.[8]
  • Organize intercommunal conferences within local governments, states and regions towards a national conference for the different peoples to agree on their partnership style. Thus, constitutional decisions and laws will reflect the people’s beliefs and agreement for a better partnership and technologically productive collaboration.
  • Invite local (and maybe foreign) specialists to train the people to process their local resources for further industrial production. Hence, each section of the society will work to specialise in producing more of whatever natural resources they have.
  • Release the people’s onshore resources for industrial productivity and eventual tax-payment to the central governments. This will motivate the government to encourage and protect people’s productivity for better tax-returns. A productive people with active industries will generate enough raw and semi-processed materials for local and foreign entrepreneurs to refine, remould in higher production and distribution. They will also be able to afford the goods and services to be provided by the entrepreneurs as viable demands.[9]
  • Enable and monitor commercial banks to create low-interest loans for people with credits as potentials for creating wealth. This people must have insurance schemes and financial advisers to guarantee prudent use of the loans, without much reckless spending. Central banks must not give direct loans to producers to avoid favouritism, bad loans, reckless capitalist gamblings and easy government bailouts.
  • Make policies for employing available Nigerian skilled labour first before other nationals when there are no qualified Nigerians for the job.
  • Use offshore resource-funds to compliment whatever is needed within.

 

If people are left to live by trading what they produce by themselves, they will wisely improve their products and trade with their neighbors, since foreign goods will be dangerously expensive for them. If they are not given import subsidy from government’s exploitation of other people’s resources, they will learn to produce things in order to have something to trade. But as long as there is easy fund from exporting seized resources, there will be no compulsion among government assistants and beneficiaries for local productivity, nor in buying Nigerian to grow the naira.

 

[1] Adewale Sogunro, “Senator Murray-Bruce: purchasing Nigerian goods to build Nigeria” in PremiumTimes, February 29, 2016. https://opinion.premiumtimesng.com/2016/02/29/171434-2/ retrieved 24th November, 2019.

[2] Walter Rodney, How Europe underdeveloped Africa, 2009 edition (Abuja: Panaf press, 2009) p.318

[3] Henry Hazlitt, Economics in one lesson (New York: Pocket books, Inc. 1946)  p.149

[4] Henry Hazlitt, Economics in one lesson (New York: Pocket books, Inc. 1946) p.31

[5] Ibid

[6] While the armed forces suppress the people, religious groups, academicians and entertainers distract them

[7] Walter Rodney, op. cit. p.250

[8] Chukwunwike Enekwechi, “The social research for a new Nigeria” in Restartnaija June 5, 2018. https://restartnaija.com/2018/06/05/social-research-new-consented-nigeria/ retrieved 22nd July, 2018

[9] Chukwunwike Enekwechi, “Protecting Nigeria from foreign exchange manipulation” Ibid