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COVID-19: Atiku Warns Nigerian Govt. Over Unproductive/Lavish Spending Amid Crisis

Unic Press UK: A former Vice President of Nigeria and the 2019 presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has cautioned both the Executive and Legislative arms of the Nigerian Government over making wrong decisions/choices that would further impoverish the Nigerian people, especially at this time of serious economic downturn due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Writing on Twitter, the former vice president said “both our production, and the price of oil have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, to the extent that we have unsold vessels, and our income has tanked by more than 50%”. He warns that Nigeria would face a more serious challenge save it reduces its expenditure by at least 25%.

“Leave the salaries of civil servants alone, but reduce the salaries of political appointees. Sell 8 or 9 of the jets in the Presidential Air Fleet. Any budget slash that is less than 25% will not be in the interest of Nigeria,” Atiku said.

Atiku highlighted some of the proactive measures being taken by Governments’ around the world in light of the uncertainties thrown up by the current public health emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. He made a reference to Saudi Arabia, saying it’s a nation with a much stronger production capacity and a larger market share and a much more solid foreign reserve than Nigeria, and yet, this oil-rich country in the Middle East has slashed her budget by circa 30%.

Also of concern is the rate at which Nigeria creates financial liabilities via loans.

“Nigeria cannot make up for the loss of expected revenue by taking out more loans and issuing out more bonds. Debt will be the death of our economy, and bonds will put our people in bondage,” the former vice president said.

 

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