Yuguda: Tinubu Is A Visionary Leader, Subsidy Had To Be Removed Since Nigeria Was Paying For Sub-Saharan Africa

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The former governor of Bauchi State, Isa Yuguda, has said that it was imperative for subsidy on petroleum products to be removed as the bulk of subsidy was being paid on petroleum products that were not being sold within Nigeria.

The former governor said this in an interview with ARISE NEWS on Tuesday where he was expressing his views on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s first year in office, where he revealed that the numerous oil thefts in the country had caused subsidised petroleum products to be sold across Sub-Saharan Africa.

Yuguda said, “This subsidy regime that had been there over time, at the time when Jonathan attempted to remove the subsidy, I must say that that was about the best time that the president then could have removed the subsidy. I have said this a number of times when I faced the media that I was part of the team that investigated the subsidy regime and the scam that we saw, and we reported this to our dear nation. So, there was every reason to remove the subsidy because the bulk of the subsidy is paid to products not sold within the Nigerian borders.

“This is a subsidy regime that we are talking about which does not really affect Nigerians, but we pay for it. We subsidise Sub-Saharan Africa and Central Africa, and we pay for their subsidies. This payment of their subsidies does not come to the coffers of government. These subsidies are paid to those racketeers, those cabals that have been doing this in the oil industry, and it’s just simple ABC, we can see this still reflecting in the increased revenue that we have today. But the actual subsidy that is supposed to be paid, I’m sure is still being paid. I don’t know how much because I am not in government, but sadly, there should be,” he further added.

However, Yuguda, reviewing Tinubu’s first year in office, said that the President “took an economy that was basically comatose, devastated, and he had to start from there.”

He said the removal of subsidy was one of Tinubu’s strategies to get the economy back on track, but this caused a significant domino effect across the country as the pump price of petroleum products caused the increase in prices of goods and services across different sectors.

He also added that because of the nature of the economy that was inherited, the foreign exchange market and the parallel market had their own “shake-ups”. He then said that due to this, the value of the naira “started nosediving on a freefall, and up till now, I believe we have not even stabilised.”

Yuguda said, “Sadly, these are all born out of the problems created as a result of the team that managed our economy before Tinubu came into government did not really do a good job. So, on coming in, you can see that the difficult decisions that ordinarily a president should take to do his job properly- biting the bullet, taking tough decisions- that is what he went into, and he did that at his best.

“And of course, hard decisions normally come with some difficult times for people, but you have to manage it, because if you don’t cure the wound, there’s no how you can get complete recovery. So, in the process of cleaning the wound and fixing it and making it better so that it can heal, all of us in the country must be filled with difficulties, pains- it goes with pains. So, it’s that time that we know there is need to exercise patience.”

He then said that President Tinubu is a leader who is “visionary and he knows precisely what to do to get his country men and women on the right track to developing the economy and developing the nation itself.”

Ozioma Samuel-Ugwuezi

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