One with deep thought will lose interest in virtually everything in Nigeria. Ranging from fuel subsidy, unprecedented hunger, aggressive increase in the price of products and services etc. Most Nigerians not been able to afford three balance square meal on a daily basis, among others are the reality facing citizens. Without egress, this is a country where the Rich are complaining not to talk of the poor. Who do we blame?
The Trending phenomenon in Nigeria of today is the removal of Fuel Subsidy which has generated a lot of controversies and clamorous demonstrations amidst every Tom, Dick and Harry. It has stirred up confusion and frustration on economic policies and programs. To move from point A to B is now more challenging and the most difficult aspect is that whatever goes up in Nigeria doesn’t return to normal.
It is difficult to convince an empathetic person that people living on less than N30,000 monthly should buy petrol at the rate of N600 per litre. If they pay the associated costs of the increase in petrol prices, we expect they will have less to expend on consumables that improve their wellbeing and enable them escape poverty. So as food inflation rises at the heels of subsidy removal, we expect access to basic nutrition, healthcare, and education to reduce, worsening poverty and inequality.
The federal government is responding with a promise of an increase in minimum wage. Labour Unions will surely bargain for mitigation for workers. But the population of Nigerians in formal employment is negligible. What happens to the rest of Nigerians in informal sector with no regular jobs or those tapped in the bottom million who cannot externalise the pass-through costs of petrol? Those are the victims of the Nigerian economy designed to cater to the wellbeing of the rich and political elites. In the short to medium term, none of the conventional mitigations, including the ridiculous N8,000 cash transfer to 40 million poor household will shield the over 80 million poor Nigerian from the crushing impact of drastic spikes in energy price.
A Hungry man is an Angry man. The alarming level of increase on petroleum prices has propelled negative reactions, inflation and dissatisfaction in different part of the country leaving unpalatable consequences for the nation’s economy and its growth.
In Nigeria, major source of income is petroleum and natural resources and now that there is no stable price for product, the government policy has fueled the economic downturn and hinder activities and directly discouraged foreign investors. The rising fuel challenges we are facing in Nigeria has abated several downturn and irregularities in the country.
Before the incumbent President Elect was sworn-in, the fear of Nigerians has always been unemployment rate, insecurity challenges, high rate of poverty, and rising debt burden fueling dismay in Nigeria, citizens have begun to cry out for new deliverers. Now that a new administration is on board the situation seems to be worsening.
The negative contribution and hardship of the country is far more than positive advantages and should the Nigerian government continue towing these paths of irresponsibility, less practice of ethical instructions among other forms of moral decadence and humanity, one should doubt a safe and hygienic future for the coming generation. This is why, it’s expedient for the government to establish a long time and sustainable approach to engage the youth, employ and empower them to a better version that can always propel the image of the country. Family should not also desist from her fundamental roles to safe every drop from this institution.
There is no doubt that Nigeria can ill-afford this level of subsidy payment with its low revenue profile. The fiscal crisis of the Nigeria economy is endemic and needs a drastic action to stabilise. That brings up the third role of government in public finance stabilisation.
The government should consider how its fiscal and monetary policies affect employment, prices, and productivity.
The inflationary impact of subsidy removal may undermine growth and economic recovery. It may reduce household consumption and aggravate poverty. This is why some who support the removal of subsidy are worried at the abrupt and reckless manner of the removal. As part of the government’s stabilisation role, it must think of mitigation of the social and economic impacts of its policy.
Most Nigerian elites seems to agree that fuel subsidy should be removed. But the elite consensus to remove the entire subsidy and expose the working and unemployed poor to poverty and immiseration does not translate to a consensus to attack many layers and levels of entrenched inefficiency in Nigerian political economy.
The Orosanya Report recommended rationalization of parastatals and agencies to reduce costs of governance. Successive Nigerian leaders have refused to implement the report because it will result in powerful elites losing high paying political jobs. Nigerian legislators earn the highest in the world in a bankrupting economy.
The annual salary and benefits of a Nigerian senator come about N350m while those of a minimum wage earner are less than N400,000. Despite clamor and street protests, legislators have refused to cut down on the gross waste.
The government should ensure frequent educational atmosphere, employment opportunities and secure lives and dreams of the youths which can encourage them to think positively and ensuring works that would engaging the youths in vocational training, cultural activities, safety cautions and precautions in using the internet
Even when the economic downturn persistently occurred and threatened the survival of the masses, those elite at the bottom and fore front of regulating the government spend lavishly leaving unpalatable consequences on the poor masses who struggle to make ends meet. Nigeria of today is currently in state of dilemma.
The government policy has left the country vulnerable and unavoidable by the downtrodden, this is the most crucial moment for all Nigerians citizenry
Finally, this is the critical moment for Nigeria as a country and if Fuel Subsidy Removal is not attended to with immediate assistance the country tends to remain the same.
All hands must be on deck to ensure and fast track the success of our economy and most importantly for the common individuals whose hope is placed on daily survival of the economy, truly Nigeria of today is a survival of the fittest.