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Atiku Calls For Massive Cuts To Presidency, NASS Budgets

***Demands Sale of Presidential fleets, removal of N27bn Renovation For NASS

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Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar has said that the recent slashing of the 2020 budget over the economic impact of coronavirus virus is insufficient and called for a downsizing of what he called the massive budgets of both the Presidency and the Legislature.

Atiku who specifically demanded that eight or nine of the jets in the Presidential Air Fleet be sold added that the budget for purchasing luxury cars for the President, his vice, and other political office holders must be jettisoned.

He also advocated that the ₦27 billion budget for the renovation of the National Assembly has to go, while clamouring for the reduction of the salaries of political appointees.

He however urged that salaries of civil servants be untouched.

Atiku in a statement said he was surprised that despite the crash in the price of oil, and the inability of Nigeria to expand its revenue base through the non oil sector, the Federal Government has only seen fit to slash the budget by a mere 0.6%, from ₦10.594 trillion to ₦ 10.523 trillion. This represents a reduction of only ₦71 billion.

He noted that when the budget was presented to the National Assembly on Tuesday October 8, 2019, it was predicated on a projection that the nation would generate crude oil production of 2.18 million barrels a day, at an expected oil price of $57 per barrel.

”Today, that is no longer the case. Both our production, and the price of oil have been severely affected by the corona virus pandemic, to the extent that we have unsold vessels, and our income has tanked by more than 50%.

”Given that this is the case, how can anyone justify a reduction in expenditure of just 0.6%? We cannot be the only nation bucking the trend?

”Saudi Arabia, a nation with a much stronger production capacity than ours and with a larger global market share, as well as foreign reserves that is 12 times ours, has slashed her budget by almost 30%. Ditto for other oil economies.

”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 best way out of this economic quagmire is to reduce our expenditure. And a 0.6% reduction is no reduction. It is only window dressing.

”My counsel to the Federal Government of Nigeria is this: put Nigerians first and cut your coat, not according to your size, but according to your cloth.

”Realistically slash the budget. Every pork barrel has to go. The billions budgeted for the travels and feeding of the President and Vice President has to be reduced. The ₦27 billion budget for the renovation of the National Assembly has to go. The massive budgets to run both the Presidency and the Legislature has to be downsized. The budget for purchasing luxury cars for the President, his vice, and other political office holders must be jettisoned. 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. And beyond a budget slash, Nigeria needs a budget realignment, to redirect expenditure away from running a massive bureaucracy, into social development sectors like education, infrastructure, and above all, healthcare. We must invest in the goose that lays the golden egg – the Nigerian people.

”These are the types of sacrifices that we need in a time of crisis. We do not need empty gestures that will lead to empty treasuries. ” He said.

1 Comment
  1. ปั้มไลค์ says

    Like!! Thank you for publishing this awesome article.

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