In a message marking the 56th Independence anniversary of the country he released on Friday, Atiku urged Nigerians not to make the mistake of imagining that the antidote to this current crisis lies with any one man/woman or the government alone.
He urged citizens to join hands with the government to pull the economy out of recession.
While emphasising the need to quickly get the economy on a roll, the former vice-president said that foreign confidence on Nigeria’s ability to end the crisis was eroding.
“We are witnessing an increasing loss of foreign confidence in the ability of Nigerians to resolve the economic downturn,”he said.
“There has been a slowdown of badly needed foreign investment, which has decelerated economic development that is so essential to the well-being of the ordinary Nigerian. The average Nigerian is worried about the state of things and yearning for a vibrant economy within a peaceful and stable environment so that he/she can carry on with daily endeavours to make ends meet.
“This time demands that we cut our coat according to our cloth, but more than anything else it demands that we lend a helping hand to one another and form a formidable coalition to push back the recession. We didn’t come to this state by our own choice.
“True, we might have made some mistakes in not being frugal at the time of surplus, it may also be true also that our policymakers kept on living in denial when this recession could have been nipped in the bud. But the mistake we must not make at the moment is to imagine that the antidote to this current crisis lies with any one man/woman or the government alone. We all must come together as patriots to fight back this ugly situation.
“Governments, corporations and private businesses must do all they can to ensure that people keep their jobs. Despicable as this moment may be, it must call to task the creativity of our young people to innovate and create unique opportunities. We must fight back at this recession on our own terms. We must never allow it to defeat our creative prowess or set us back on terms that we are not prepared for.
“I have spent a lifetime fighting for our citizens inside and outside the government, and I stand on this day of pride to assure all Nigerians that we shall all face the challenges together. This I know is not a job for one man/woman but a job for all of us.
“I stand with our president in his quest to right the turbulent ship of Nigeria. I call on all Nigerians to join hands and unite behind the common goal of making Nigeria a great nation in our lifetime.”