By Luminous Jannamike,ABUJA
The Resource Centre for Human Rights and Civic Education (CHRICED) has condemned President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s announcement on subsidy removal during his inaugural address on May 29, 2023.
In a statement on Wednesday, CHRICED’s Executive Director, Dr Zikirullahi Ibrahim, expressed concern about the approach of the current administration to implementing public policy in Nigeria, particularly the lack of a roadmap to address the haemorrhage in the economy and Nigeria’s public finances.
The removal of subsidies has been a contentious issue in Nigeria, with previous attempts to remove the subsidy leading to widespread protests and strikes. The country has been grappling with economic challenges, including high inflation, unemployment, and a large debt burden.
CHRICED called on organized labour and civil society organizations to resist the removal of subsidies in Nigeria, citing the potential negative impact on the citizens’ livelihoods and the already struggling economy.
The group further criticized the hasty announcement by the President without adequate consultation and engagement with stakeholders.
The statement reads in part, “We unequivocally condemn President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s hasty announcement on subsidy removal during his inaugural address on May 29, 2023.
“For an administration battling for legitimacy, particularly in light of the legal challenge to its electoral mandate, this is a troubling sign. Therefore, the least Nigerians expect from the new government is strategic thinking supported by the ability to solve problems in a calm and calculated manner, which takes into account the welfare and well-being of citizens.
“It is unacceptable that Nigerians who were pushed to their limits during the Buhari years would again be tasked to make more sacrifices when the administration itself is yet to provide the road map on how it intends to address the haemorrhage in the economy and Nigeria’s public finances.
“It is abundantly clear therefore that removing subsidy, without addressing these other fundamentals would only give the initiative to greedy marketers to mindlessly exploit Nigerians. In the face of these realities, and for the fact that Tinubu’s approach has proved to be an extension of what was done in the last government, CHRICED calls on organized labour and all well-meaning civil society organisations to brace up for the struggles ahead.
“The earlier all pressure groups realise this and wake up, the better for the resistance against inhumane and repressive policies, which do not put into consideration the effects of such implementation on ordinary citizens.”