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Bolaji Abdullahi: Tinubu administration didn’t prepare Nigerians for economic reforms

Bolaji Abdullahi: Tinubu administration didn’t prepare Nigerians for economic reforms
March 08
08:17 2024

Bolaji Abdullahi, a former minister of sports and youth development, says the President Bola Tinubu administration did not prepare Nigerians for the economic reforms it has been implementing. 

Abdullahi spoke on Thursday during an interview on Politics Today, a Channels TV programme.

He said the federal government may have good intentions regarding the policies being implemented, but did not prepare people for their impact.

The ex-minister said two key policies — removal of fuel subsidy and unification of the forex market — have impacted the economy in such a way that prices of commodities are soaring beyond the reach of millions of Nigerians.

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“What I feel is that Nigerians do not appear prepared for the kind of situations that we find ourselves in,” Abdullahi said.

“You know when the government came onboard and some measures were being introduced, those measures were intended to move the country forward, to deliver on the promises that they made when they took power.

“But what didn’t happen was to prepare Nigerians for the unintended consequences of some of those actions that necessarily need to be taken because you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.

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“Nigerians do not care much when they do not find it difficult to feed but they are beginning to care now that it is getting harder for them to feed.

“Nigerians really don’t care much about some things. Nigerians don’t care whether you are flying your private jets or whatever.

“As long as they can enter their ‘Marwa’ and move from one point to another or enter a filling station and buy fuel and move from one point to another.

“You don’t care about their Louis Vuitton or Versace bag as long as you can open your poly bag and find food in it, right?

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“So it’s when that becomes difficult that all kinds of questions begin to come up and they begin to look at the kind of tie you are wearing, begin to look at the cost of your wristwatch, you know.

“I think it is something that needs to happen but not adding that to the issue of subsidy removal, the issue of forex and naira, then the issue of hunger in the land.

“Then you add implementing another committee report that is likely to create losers, people who are going to lose their jobs. I think it will be too much and the government needs to be very careful.”

He said the administration needs to engage more, adding that people would need the government to explain to them why they are suffering, as well as when the suffering would end.

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Abdullahi said he believes that implementing the Oronsaye report, when people are still grappling with effects of fuel subsidy removal and forex unification, will put more pressure on the government.

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