Former vice-president Atiku Abubakar

Nigeria’s celebration of exit from recession was premature as the economy has yet to fully pick up, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has said.

In his keynote address at the Silverbird’s 2017 man of the year award ceremony, Atiku said, “After contracting for five consecutive quarters, Nigeria came out of recession in the second quarter of 2017 with a GDP growth rate of 0.55 per cent. In the third quarter, we fared better with 1.40 per cent.

“While this looks somewhat like we exited the recession, the reality is that when you factor in our population growth rate of 2.3 per cent, which is one of the highest in the world, have we really exited a recession? Technically, yes, but in reality, it is doubtful.”