Government will Go after Those Trying to Undermine Its Efforts-Minister

Juliet Jacob

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has said that the positive outcomes of federal government  reforms are becoming evident and the government will take action against those who tries to sabotage  its efforts.

Idris made this known in a statement issued on Friday.

He said”, When President Bola Ahmed Tinubu took office on May 29, 2023, he shared his economic vision for Nigeria, making two notable policy announcements. One was the discontinuation of the petrol subsidy due to its rising costs and declining resources. He assured that the savings from this decision would be directed towards essential sectors like public infrastructure, education, healthcare, social programs, and overall prosperity for millions of Nigerians.

“The removal of the petrol subsidy has led to a significant decrease in petrol importation by fifty percent, totaling one billion liters monthly, as per data from the National Bureau of Statistics. Additionally, crude oil production has been on the rise, with an increase to an average of 1.55 million barrels per day in Q4 2023 from 1.22 million barrels per day in the previous quarter.

“Furthermore, States have seen a boost in monthly receipts from the Federal Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) since the subsidy removal, providing governments with extra funds to deliver services to the people.

“It is interesting to note that all three major candidates agreed on the removal of the petrol subsidy as a policy decision in their campaigns. It is disappointing to see those who previously supported the removal now opposing it, showing insincerity which is not favorable for our country and democracy.

“President Tinubu also made a significant promise regarding a unified exchange rate by the Central Bank of Nigeria. In a move towards a more transparent and fair monetary policy, the CBN took a bold step by relaxing control on foreign exchange rates, allowing transactions to occur at market rates based on the principle of ‘willing seller willing buyer,’ while still maintaining operational independence.

“We, as a government, are realistic in understanding that the policy changes we are making are not magical solutions on their own. We are aware that these are essential fiscal and monetary steps that need to be supplemented with further actions to truly promote economic growth and prosperity. It is recognized by experts that these fundamental reforms will be tough on Nigerians in the short run, but they are necessary to remove obstacles hindering sustainable economic progress.

“The challenges we are addressing are complex and deeply rooted, necessitating diverse and strategic solutions. The bold actions being taken are in line with what is needed to address these issues convincingly.

“The Central Bank of Nigeria has taken proactive measures to boost liquidity in the forex market, including unifying exchange rates, settling outstanding Forex obligations, and introducing new operational guidelines for banks, BDC operators, and IMTOs.

“It is heartening to see positive outcomes as the naira stabilizes, with a rise in capital importation and inflows into the foreign exchange market. Despite this progress, there are challenges due to resistance from speculators and unethical entities benefitting from the system’s disorder. Regulatory agencies are actively working together to combat these issues and address illegal activities within the forex market, ensuring those involved face consequences. The government is committed to protecting the currency and economy from destabilizing factors, and will persist in taking necessary measures to maintain naira stability.

“We ask for the continued patience and understanding of Nigerians as we navigate through challenging times towards a period of great rewards and renewed hope. The President reminds us that the current challenges are temporary, and together, we will conquer them. The President and his team are unwavering in their determination to provide immediate relief and long-term prosperity for all Nigerians.”

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