Note From Reno Omokri On The Removal of Fuel Subsidy

President Bola Tinubu must not budge on his decision to stick with the removal of fuel subsidy in response to the strike action called for next Wednesday by the Nigerian Labour Congress, or he will cause unimaginable problems for his government and the nation's future progress. 

Instead, address the nation now and create an infrastructure fund where the money saved from subsidy will go and get a Nigerian of unimpeachable integrity, like Bishop Matthew Kukah, or Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi, to head it. 

In the broadcast, President Tinubu must immediately start cutting waste in government by putting up eight of the ten Presidential planes he inherited from Buhari for sale. Sell the Mercedes Maybachs in the Presidential convoy Buhari bequeathed him and use less expensive cars instead. 

He should tell the nation that he has unilaterally reduced his salary and those of all his political appointees, as well as the State House budget, and order permanent secretaries to IMMEDIATELY reduce their budgets to only the barest minimum. 

He ought to also offer to increase workers' salaries. Immediately introduce wide-ranging palliatives to help Nigerians transit to the new price regime. Introduce conditional cash transfers direct to bank accounts of the poorest 5% of the population. Give in to every other condition by the NLC. 

But whatever he does, President Tinubu must not back down and intervene in the pump price of petrol. Please leave it to market forces. Once he loses his authority so cheaply, he will never regain it at the same level. 

Tinubu, stamp your authority unequivocally on the NLC. It is the right thing to do, and Nigerians will support you if you also make sacrifices. And though it brings short-term pains, subsidy removal will also result in long-term gains. 

Look at Benin Republic lamenting about subsidy removal in NIgeria. What is their business with our domestic issues? Why are they complaining? Because we are also subsidising them, and Niger, as well as Chad and Cameroon. Nigeria cannot keep leading a life of consumption and expecting the benefits of a nation that engages in production.

Copyright: Reno Omokri

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