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May 29, 2023

Inauguration: 7 key takeaways from Tinubu’s inaugural speech  

Inauguration: 7 key takeaways from Tinubu’s inaugural speech  

President Bola Tinubu, has been officially sworn in as the 16th president of Nigeria amid colourful events and festive mood at the Eagle Square today (Monday). 

Tinubu, in his inaugural speech, touched on keynote policies and initiatives that will herald the start of his administration.

Here are seven major takeaways from the President’s speech.

Fuel subsidy is gone 

TInubu, has reaffirmed that the era of fuel subsidy is gone.

He said, “We commend the decision of the outgoing administration in phasing out the petrol subsidy regime which has increasingly favoured the rich more than the poor. Subsidy can no longer justify its ever-increasing costs in the wake of drying resources. 

“We shall instead re-channel the funds into better investment in public infrastructure, education, health care and jobs that will materially improve the lives of millions.  

We’ll create jobs, prosperity for youth

The president emphasized that his administration must create meaningful opportunities for our youth, saying “We shall honour our campaign commitment of one million new jobs in the digital economy. 

“Our government also shall work with the National Assembly to fashion an omnibus Jobs and Prosperity bill. This bill will give our administration the policy space to embark on labour-intensive infrastructural improvements, encourage light industry and provide improved social services for the poor, elderly and vulnerable,” he said. 

We shall reform security doctrine

Tinubu noted that security shall be the top priority of his administration, because neither prosperity nor justice can prevail amidst insecurity and violence.

He said, “To effectively tackle this menace, we shall reform both our security DOCTRINE and its ARCHITECTURE.

“We shall invest more in our security personnel, and this means more than an increase in number. We shall provide, better training, equipment, pay and firepower.”

We’ll target higher GDP growth

On the economy, Tinubu said he will target a higher GDP growth and to significantly reduce unemployment. 

“We intend to accomplish this by taking the following steps: First, budgetary reform stimulating the economy without engendering inflation will be instituted.

“Second, industrial policy will utilize the full range of fiscal measures to promote domestic manufacturing and lessen import dependency.

“Third, electricity will become more accessible and affordable to businesses and homes alike. Power generation should nearly double and transmission and distribution networks improved. We will encourage states to develop local sources as well.

“I have a message for our investors, local and foreign: our government shall review all their complaints about multiple taxation and various anti-investment inhibitions.

“We shall ensure that investors and foreign businesses repatriate their hard earned dividends and profits home,” he said.

We’ll create agricultural hubs across nation

Tinubu said rural incomes shall be secured by commodity exchange boards guaranteeing minimal prices for certain crops and animal products, adding that “A nationwide programme for storage and other facilities to reduce spoilage and waste will be undertaken.

“Agricultural hubs will be created throughout the nation to increase production and engage in value-added processing. The livestock sector will be introduced to best modern practices and steps taken to minimize the perennial conflict over land and water resources in this sector.

“Through these actions, food shall be made more abundant yet less costly. Farmers shall earn more while the average Nigerian pays less.”

Monetary policy needs thorough housecleaning

President Tinubu noted that the monetary policy needs thorough housecleaning, saying the Central Bank must work towards a unified exchange rate. 

“This will direct funds away from arbitrage into meaningful investment in the plant, equipment and jobs that power the real economy.

“Interest rates need to be reduced to increase investment and consumer purchasing in ways that sustain the economy at a higher level.

“Whatever merits it had in concept, the currency swap was too harshly applied by the CBN given the number of unbanked Nigerians. The policy shall be reviewed. In the meantime, my administration will treat both currencies as legal tender,” he said. 

Our foreign policy objective is peace, stability

Tinubu said, “Given the world in which we reside, please permit a few comments regarding foreign policy.

“The crisis in Sudan and the turn from democracy by several nations in our immediate neighbourhood are of pressing concern.

“As such, my primary foreign policy objective must be the peace and stability of the West African subregion and the African continent. We shall work with ECOWAS, the AU and willing partners in the international community to end extant conflicts and to resolve new ones.

“As we contain threats to peace, we shall also retool our foreign policy to more actively lead the regional and continental quest for collective prosperity.”