Most of us, including those too young to have lived a single day through it, associate the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) of the 1980s with the darkest period in Nigeria’s economic history. The popular narrative generally considers SAP to have both caused the problems and failed to fix them, laying the blame squarely at IBB’s feet.
It’s not quite that simple.
SAP reforms were introduced in mid-1986 as a precondition for Nigeria’s borrowing from the World Bank/IMF. We didn’t have much choice.
So what lessons did we learn/should we have learnt from our economic history in the 1980s?