April 14, 2024

Buzz News Nigeria

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100 Days: Tinubu Has Performed Beyond Expectations -Osifo

A former presidential aspirant under the All Progressives Congress, Mr Stanley Osifo, is of the view that President Bola Tinubu is delivering on his campaign promises to the people.

Osifo also assured that fuel prices would soon go down once the nation’s refineries and private refineries start working. He spoke in an interview.

How will you describe the 100 days of President Bola Tinubu in office?

The 100 days of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu have been fantastic, he has gone beyond the expectations of many Nigerians. Economically and in all areas he is doing his best, he is bringing his experience to bear. We can now see that Tinubu is a man of his words who mean well for the people. Nigerians should just be patient with him and allow him to do what they elected him to do.

But in these 100 days, people have been saying that things have been bad, especially the nation’s economy due to the removal of fuel subsidy, exchange rate of naira and that many things have gone bad, what are your views on these?

Whatever will end well always starts rough, if you want things to go right you have to start in a rough way. Remember during the time of former president Goodluck Jonathan, it was not possible to remove fuel subsidy. But, during the administration of former president Muhammadu Buhari, subsidy had to be removed at the tail end. What we are seeing right now was an action taken by former president Buhari, it was not an action that came on board under president Bola Ahmed Tinubu, he only announced that it’s gone. The provision for subsidy was made to cover till end of May, 2023 and after that, it was not included in the budget. Tinubu just had to tell Nigerians that fuel subsidy is gone. After the removal of subsidy, many people within and outside Nigeria started complaining, that showed that it was being smuggled outside the country. Also, funds for subsidy was being cornered by some people in the country. Some people were claiming subsidy for empty cargoes. So, a lot things were not okay, and they needed to be addressed. We should commend the President for taken the bold initiative of stopping fuel subsidy that was being paid to some people. All Nigerians are feeling it right now because it was a sudden occurrence that took everybody off balance. We are all feeling it and the President knows, but with time, when the refineries come on board around December, 2023, or before that, and we have some other private refineries coming onboard in Nigeria, the prices of fuel would still come down to around N200 or less per litre.
On the issue of the exchange rates of naira to foreign currencies, this is not what the government can determine to a large extent. People even clamoured that the two exchange rates system before the coming of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu weren’t good for the country because some people would get dollars for around N400 each officially, while some others would get it for N500 or N600 each at the black market then. So, there were no certainty for the investors about what they could get for their investments in Nigeria. That was why the President said that we should have unified system and that was done by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) within a month that he got into office. That also triggered the black market as there was more demands for dollars that made the rate to go higher. But the federal government intervened and right now, we have seen that the dollar flight has been reduced. So, economically much has been done. The government has also set up a team that would look at the issues affecting Nigeria as a nation and there ars new ministers onboard and the Federal Government has also brought some other people to join the President to ensure that those things that we talk about are addressed.

 

What of the high level of inflation and unemployment in the country?

The issue of inflation and unemployment are what the current government wants to tackle. They are issues the President will address with the team that he has formed to work with him.

The Federal Government tried to provide palliatives for the vulnerable in the country due to the effect of fuel subsidy removal by giving some money to state Governors for palliatives, but there is no doubt that subsidy removal has much effect on the people, in what other ways do you think the government can ameliorate the sufferings of the people?

 

Many state governments have been doing their best with the little resources they were given by the Federal Government. They are giving foodstuffs to the vulnerable, they are also giving farm inputs to some farmers. You will recall that President Tinubu once addressed Nigerians on this and he rolled out plans that the government has put in place to assuage the effects of the fuel subsidy on the people. One of such is the provision of buses across the country to corporate organisations to manage and use to convey the people. Another way is for Nigeria to get bigger on agricultural production. Some billions of naira have been allocated for this for farmers to plant many crops. There are so many things that the government has put in place to ensure that the effects of fuel subsidy removal is reduced to the barest minimum.
But the main thing we are talking about is PMS that most vehicles use, and I believe that some private and public refineries would soon come on board and with this the issue of fuel price and all these would be reduced for the people to afford conveniently. That would also reduce the exchange rate of dollar to naira because people would not need to import fuel again.

 

What do you think the government should do to address insecurity urgently as people are still being kidnapped and there have been cases of killings in recent times?

The President actually looked at this and as soon as he came in, he brought in news security heads as the security of lives is uppermost. We have had some security issues, but they are not as they used to be before the President got into office. In the past, we used to hear of herdsmen attack in one state or the other. But we have not heard of this in recent times apart from bandits that attack in some places or some of these people that have issues to tackle with another set of people. The President has spoken about it and he is going to do something about this. We know that very soon, the issue of insecurity and criminality would be addressed. However, we need to differentiate between insecurity and criminality. The government has done a lot to address insecurity in the country because Boko Haram members and those of ISWAP are not as powerful or as strong as they used to be. We have not heard about them like before. But if it is criminality, this is regular, it is not in Nigeria alone, it is everywhere. Go to the United States of America, Europe and other places, you woy hear of criminality there. Infact, I would want to say that what happens in some other countries are worse than what happens here. But because we are here, and we hear about them everytime, we feel it is only happening here believe that there is improvement on security under this government.

 

What do you think President Bola Tinubu should address urgently for the people now that he has won the case that was instituted against him at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT)?

To start with, let me congratulate all Nigerians because they were the ones that voted for the President to lead them. Let me also congratulate President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR. I think Nigerians did not make a mistake in choosing him as their President. A lot of actions that he has taken and decisions that he made show that he has come to really work. From the day of inauguration till today, he is still working. Remember, that doctors, and some categories of workers wanted to go on strike before he got into office, but they withdraw this after he spoke to them. Also, in other areas, like the economy, the President has done well. Going forward, the President should do more. In the last 100 days that he has been in office, he has proven that he knows what to do. Both locally and internationally, he is addressing issues, he is responding to issues, he is doing things that Nigerians never thought he could do. I want to encourage him to double his efforts at ensuring that every area that he needs to touch is touched and he should ensure that there is improvement in the livelihood of Nigerians. What he started is good, he just needs to improve, get better and address those issues. It would take time, but I believe that there is light at the end of the tunnel with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

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