Tinubu Explains Why Nigeria Stopped Exporting Raw Gold, Lithium, Other Minerals

We’ll Brace The Odds To Reengineer Nigeria’s Economy – Tinubu

11 months ago
3 mins read

As Nigerians grapple with the prevailing challenges, President Bola Tinubu has reiterated the resolve of his administration to deal with the issues and restructure the economy for long-term gain.

Tinubu has since his Inauguration as the 16th democratically elected president of Nigeria, introduced a number of policies which he believes are geared toward strengthening the economy. Key among them are the removal of subsidies on petrol which has been draining government resources and foreign exchange (FX) reforms.

However, the reforms are unfortunately posing economic challenges to the citizens in the interim, such as the rising cost of things (transportation, energy, and food among others) due to the sudden hike in the price of petrol as a result of the subsidy removal. The FX reforms have also seen the naira further devalued.

These issues have sparked reactions from Nigerians including the protest organised by labour unions to demand that the Federal Government should take drastic steps to address the impact of the policies on the citizens.

Speaking at the meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Executive Committee (NEC) on Thursday, August 3, President Tinubu acknowledged that the country is facing challenges but his administration is taking steps to find a sustainable solution.

He said: “Nigeria is going through some issues and I have sufficiently addressed it in my broadcast… We will face it squarely to re-engineer the economy of this country.
“We must find a way to satisfy the yearnings of the common man and we must ensure that all the policies we roll out work for the common man. Our policies are for the people not to punish the people.”

Tinubu had in his nationwide broadcast on Monday, July 31 listed a number of immediate and long-term measures being taken by his government to address the economic challenges in the country currently caused by the fuel subsidy removal.

Some of them include proving low-interest loans for manufacturers, and Small Scale businesses, to boost production, and stimulate economic activities. He also announced plans to release 200,000 Metric Tonnes of grains from strategic reserves to households across the 36 states and FCT to tackle food crisis, provide seedlings and fertilizers for farmers, and also “support cultivation of 500,000 hectares of farmland and all-year-round farming practice.”

READ ALSO: Subsidy: FG To Give ₦75bn To 75 Companies To Boost Production – Tinubu

He also said the government plans to roll out buses across the states and local governments for mass transit at a much more affordable rate. “We have made provision to invest N100 billion between now and March 2024 to acquire 3000 units of 20-seater CNG-fuelled buses.

“These buses will be shared to major transportation companies in the states, using the intensity of travel per capita. Participating transport companies will be able to access credit under this facility at 9% per annum with 60 months repayment period,” he explained.

However, a cross-section of Nigerians have asked why the president failed to speak on what the government intends to do to address the high prices of petroleum products such as ensuring that they are produced locally by getting the refineries to work.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in while reacting to Tinubu’s July 31 broadcast, said he failed to address the core issue Nigerians needed to know. According to the labour union, it was “not the silver bullet Nigerians expected”

It said that the president failed to speak on how the government plans to resuscitate the public refineries.

“We expected that the next line of statement would be how the present government plans to resuscitate our public refineries which have been lying comatose for so many years and is the major pain point in the whole subsidy narrative. Unfortunately, the entire speech by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu was completely silent on the issue of the repair of our national refineries.”

NLC said it also expected the president to reveal those behind the “looting of Nigeria’s commonwealth under the guise of petrol subsidy.”

It also stated that the President’s claim of working with Organised Labour to review the national minimum wage “is out of sync with what has played out since President Tinubu removed the so-called petrol subsidy. In all the meetings scheduled by the government, Organised Labour has been forced to negotiate with empty chairs on the Federal Government’s side as the Federal Government has not matched its public promises with a firm commitment to
negotiate in good faith with labour. As a matter of fact, the sub-committee on wage awards has not been inaugurated and has not met.”

The labour union said it remains committed to fighting for the welfare of Nigerians until it sees real commitment from the Federal Government to address the sufferings of Nigerians.

 


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