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Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa and the 11th in the world. She is endowed with vast human and natural resources, including oil and gas. Yet after 37 years of independence, Nigerians are unanimous in their conviction that the economic and political performance of their nation is far below her potential, and their own expectations and aspirations. The conviction that the country's poor economic and political performance is neither representative of her potential nor in consonance with the aspirations of her citizens, and their determination that their nation should occupy her rightful place in the comity of nations led the Head of State, Commander-in- Chief, General Sani Abacha, GCON, MNI, to set up the VISION 2010 committe on 27th November, 1996.
The Committee comprised of 248 members, including 25 foreign stakeholders resident in Nigeria. The Committee's mandate, set out in a 14-item Terms of Reference, required it to develop a blueprint that will transform the country and place it firmly on the route to becoming a developed nation by the year 2010.
The committe worked for 10 months using the following methodology
- Plenary sessions, held in the form of 12 workshops, spread over the period;
- Sub-committees on particular problem areas;
- 57 external workshops;
- Specifically commissioned studies;
- Consideration of 750 memoranda from the general public;
- Presentations by guest speakers, and
- Intensive brainstorming among committee members.
The Committe organised its works under 53 sub-committees and 8 clusters of sub-committes, cover 13 critical success factors, 17 economic issues, 17 special issues and 6 general issues. Arising from the results of this process, the committee concluded that by 2010 Nigeria would have transformed into a country which is:
"A united, industrious, caring and God-fearing democratic society, committed to making the basic needs of life affordable for everyone, and creating Africa's leading economy."
The achievement of this Vision calls for paradigm shift in the mindset of all Nigerians to imbibe new core values, norms and standards that would align with the requirements of the global realities, rapid technological change, globalisation and liberalisation. It also requires a change in the things the nation does henceforth and how she does them.
The salient findings of the Committee, report undervarious areas and issues on which Nigeria should focus in order to attain this vision, are Education, Health, Industry, Petroleum, solid Minerals, Agriculture, Infrastructure, Poverty Alleviation, Rural and Urban Development, Unemployment, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises, Public and Private Sector Partnership, Stable Policy Environment, Law and Order, Anti-Corruption, Good Governance, External Image and Capital Mobilisation, among others.
Over the Vision period, the successful management of the above areas and issues depends on a proper appreciation of "Where We Are," "Where We Want To Be" and"How To Get There" in respect of each, as follows:
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