President Muhammadu Buhari says the impact of hundreds of millions of dollars which international organisations claimed to have been spent on the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North East is "rarely" seen on ground.
President Buhari said this on Wednesday in Abuja while administering oaths of office on members of the newly constituted Presidential Economic Advisory Council (PEAC).
The president, who set an agenda of what they should accomplish in the shortest possible time by focusing on primary data collection, said most of the statistics quoted about Nigeria were developed abroad by the World Bank, IMF and other foreign bodies.
He described some of the statistics as 'disturbing' wild estimates that bore little relation to the facts on the ground.
He said such development implied that "we are not fully aware of what is happening in our own country", stressing that "We can only plan realistically when we have reliable data."
President Buhari, who spoke at a meeting with the 8-man Council chaired by Prof. Doyin Salami, charged them to focus on developing reliable data that will properly reflect what is happening in the country.
The President called the task before the PEAC "most important national assignment", according to a statement issued today by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity Femi Adesina.
The chairman of Council, Professor Salami, said the mandate was about "Nigeria first, Nigeria second, and Nigeria always," adding that it was about Nigerians, not as numbers, but as people.
"Our goal is that the economy grows in a manner that is rapid, inclusive, sustained and sustainable, so that Nigerians will feel the impact," he said.