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Address issues concerning poor people, Obi tasks politicians
 
By: News Editor
Thu, 13 Jun 2024   ||   Nigeria,
 

Candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in the 2023 presidential election, Mr Peter Obi, has called on politicians to have a rethink and focus on addressing issues concerning the poor in the country.

Obi’s challenge was predicated on his claim that Nigeria has not really achieved much in the last 25 years of democratic governance.

The former presidential candidate and former governor of Anambra State, while speaking as guest on Arise News Prime Time programme yesterday night, blamed politicians for many of the hardships in the country.

According to him, the questions that ought to be asked as Nigeria commemorates 25 years of uninterrupted democratic governance are, “are we truly democratic? Democracy is government of the people, for the people and by the people, what we have today, is it government of the people?

 

While lamenting that massive corruption, insecurity, hunger amongst others have swallowed whatever gains or dividends of democracy, Obi pointed out that, “what we are experiencing is state capture” because “all we are supposed to see in education, health etc have been captured by a few”.

Besides he pointed out that the nation is at its lowest in all facets of life; something which he challenged the administration of President Bola Tinubu to urgently reverse.

 

 

“We are actually working in the wrong direction and we need to change it and it has to start with the number one person “, he said.

“President Tinubu has kept his campaign promises, throughout his campaign he consistently maintained that he will continue from where Buhari stopped”, he added.

He recalled that when Tinubu took over from Buhari last year the dollar exchange rate which today is N1,500 was N460; fuel rose from N200 to N700; diesel from N844 to N1,115.

Stating further that basic food items like gari, tomatoes, rice as well as electricity tariffs experienced astronomical increase, the former presidential candidate disclosed that “this year alone government through the CBN has issued and taking from the system over N16 trillion”.

 

He said, “when he took over last year, we were still the largest economy in Africa, today we are 4th” overtaken by South Africa, Egypt and Morocco “.

He blamed the current ostentatious lifestyle of the current administration, stressing that the government cannot tell the people to bear the economic hardship and go ahead to spend over N21 billion for the accommodation of the Vice President, especially when millions of Nigerians are facing housing problem.

Obi argued that the president out to start by cutting cost and curbing corruption, adding that agencies of the government such as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should concentrate on issues like budget padding, undisclosed subsidy, oil theft and other economic crimes instead of chasing individuals like jailed Bob Risky (a cross dresser) recently jailed for naira abuse.

“It is time to have a rethink, we have to think of the poor people, we must refocus and address issues that concerns poor people” he said, adding that no serious government should allow the factors that led to the collapse of Heritage bank recently, where a lot of poor people lost their live savings.

“Budget padding is where they should be and not arresting Bob Risky, these are the things we need to face clearly”, he said.

Meanwhile, he denied having anything to do with online attack against the person of Noble Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, pointing out that Soyinka is a father and one he will continue to reverence and respect.

He also described himself as a faithful member of the LP, and will continue to work for the good of the party, adding that the party is set to resolve its problems in a short while. Obi however stated that the LP is ready to work with like minds to rescue Nigeria

He said, “I am not desperate to be president, I am desperate to make Nigeria work”.

 

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