July 21, 2024

“Skipping NEC Meetings Made You Ignorant” – Federal Govt Hits Obaseki, says Edo Gov uninformed about Tinubu’s Post-Subsidy Measures

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Fuel Subsidy Palaver, Governor Obaseki vs President Tinubu

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By Reporter

The Minister of Information and Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has responded to Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, after he accused the Bola Tinubu administration of failing to properly plan for the economic consequences of removing petrol subsidy.

Idris said Obaseki’s absence from National Economic Council (NEC) meetings led by Vice President Kashim Shettima resulted in his lack of knowledge about the reliefs and support measures initiated by the Tinubu administration to alleviate the impact of the fuel subsidy removal on citizens.

Governor Obaseki on Wednesday raised concerns about the impact of the administration’s alleged incompetence on the “weakest and most vulnerable” members of society during an interactive session with journalists in Benin, the Edo State capital.

The governor, who is a chieftain of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), spoke against the backdrop that some states were yet to receive the N5 billion earmarked as part of the Federal Government’s palliative package for each state.

But reacting, Idris first clarified that the removal of fuel subsidy had been widely advocated by Nigerians, state governors from various political parties, as well as global institutions like the World Bank and IMF.

He noted that Edo State under Obaseki had significantly benefited from the fuel subsidy removal, resulting in a substantial increase in federal allocations to the state.

The financial boost, according to the minister, was evidence of the positive impact of the policy change on state finances.

Idris challenged Governor Obaseki to explain to the people of Edo why he absented himself from “the two NEC meetings under the current administration”.

The minister advised that rather than shift “focus to the nation’s economic challenges as cannon fodder to divert attention from his poor performance at the state level,” the governor should pay attention on “how the Edo State Government will be using available resources to drive impactful projects that genuinely uplift the people of Edo State.”

Idris noted some of the measures taken by the Tinubu administration to mitigate impact of fuel subsidy removal to include the allocation of N5 billion to each state for the purchase of food items for distribution to families.

The measures, he added, include the establishment of a committee by NEC to negotiate a new national minimum wage with Labor Unions and to review salaries for public sector employees.

President Tinubu is guiding our country through very challenging times. We are supremely confident that we will soon turn the corner into a prosperous future.

“What is required at this time is for leaders at all levels to cooperatively bind together to make life better for Nigerians, not to play cheap politics that serves no better purpose.

“As President Tinubu has admonished, the time for politics and politicking is over. We are now in the season of the serious business of governance to build a stronger, more viable, socially cohesive and more prosperous Nigeria,” Idris affirmed.

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