…says remittances hit $25 billion
President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians in the Diaspora to actively participate in the country’s Post-COVID-19 economic recovery efforts.
In a video message to commemorate this year’s Diaspora Day, observed on July 25 of every year, President Buhari appealed to his compatriots, whose home remittances exceeded $25 billion annually in three years, not to abandon their fatherland in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a statement made available to newsmen yesterday by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, Buhari said: “Over the past three years, Nigerians in the diaspora have brought in over $25 billion annually as home remittances to the Nigerian economy through official and non-formal channels. ‘’This is about 6.0% of our annual GDP and upwards of 80% of our annual budget.
This has impacted on livelihoods of Nigerians in terms of education, health, housing and estate development, industry, trade and investments, agriculture and technology/ skills transfer.
‘’In terms of diaspora home remittances, Nigeria is rated as number one in sub-Saharan Africa and this is still growing especially with the advocacy and mobilization programmes of the newly established Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM).
Speaking on the theme of this year’s celebration: “Leveraging Diaspora Resources for National Development in a COVID-19 Era”, the Chairman/ CEO of NiDCOM, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa said the focus of the 2020 celebration was indicative of the mandate of NiDCOM as well as what the agency has accomplished since its creation.
“Since its establishment a year ago, the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission has a lot to celebrate. This is because the passion and consistency that saw to the establishment of the commission have been maintained and sustained.”