Coming on the back of the United Nations declaring that Nigeria has entered into another recession, for the 2nd time in 5-years. The former Vice President and the PDP Presidential candidate for the 2019 general elections Atiku Abubakar and the Socio-Economic Right And Accountability NGO has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to cut the cost of Governance.
Former VP Atiku Abubakar in his lengthy thread on Twitter called on the president to take a cue from his advice and cut the cost of governance as the Nigerian people can no longer pay so much for such poor delivery of governance.
He further advised that the current administration should impose taxes more luxury goods, also calling for the culling out other special benefits given to public officers. While SERAP on the own part asked the government to come to terms with the truth of the current situation of the country and focus more on the reality of global economies and trends.
Atiku’s statement reads in part:
We Must Exit This Recession With Precision. It is with a very heavy heart that I received the confirmation that for the second time in five years, #Nigeria has entered into another #recession.
Heaviness of heart, because this could have been avoided had this administration taken heed to the patriotic counsel given by myself and other well-meaning Nigerians on cutting the cost of governance, saving for a rainy day, and avoiding profligate borrowing.
Yes, the COVID19 pandemic has exacerbated an already bad situation, however, we could have avoided this fate by a disciplined and prudent management of our economy.
For a start, the proposed 2021 budget presented to the National Assembly on Tuesday, October 8, 2020, is no longer tenable.
Nigeria neither has the resources, or the need to implement such a luxury heavy budget. The nation is broke, but not broken. However, if we continue to spend lavishly, even when we do not earn commensurately, we would go from being a broke nation, to being a broken nation. As a matter of importance and urgency, every non essential line item in the proposed 2021 budget must be expunged.
For the avoidance of doubt, this ought to include estacodes, non emergency travel, feeding, welfare packages, overseas training, new vehicle purchases, office upgrades, non salary allowances, etc.
Until our economic prospects improve, Nigeria ought to exclusively focus on making budgetary proposals for essential items, which include reasonable wages and salaries, infrastructural projects, and social services (citizenry’s health, and other human development investments).
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