• Tuesday, May 21, 2024
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Tinubunomics: Beyond currency shame!

Tinubunomics: Beyond currency shame!

A number of voters, initially drawn to President Tinubu with the expectation that his leadership would usher in a period of economic prosperity, are now grappling with a stark reality after 245 days in office.

The reality became evident when President Tinubu visited his base in Lagos State (specifically the Island) in December. Instead of his supporters waving to him as usual, they were heard shouting in Yoruba language, saying ‘Ebí npà wa o’, which means ‘We are hungry’ persistently.

This could be traced to the economic approach of President Tinubu, coined ‘Tinubunomics’, which has not lived up to its promises and instead has exacerbated hardships for many Nigerians. The remote cause of these hardships can be attributed to his two economic agendas, which are subsidy removal and unification of the exchange rate.

Read also: Tinubu asks Senate to confirm Cardoso, 11 others as chairman, members of MPC

The disillusionment among these supporters is palpable, as they find themselves in a situation starkly different from the optimistic vision they had initially embraced.

Imagine that among the five anglophone members of ECOWAS, which are Nigeria, Sierra Leone (N0.061/1SLL), Liberia (N6.28/1 LRD), Ghana (N96.50/1GHC), and Gambia (N17.71/1GMD), Nigeria’s naira value is the fourth-lowest value despite being Africa’s largest economy.

While Ghanaians find optimism in the robust Cedi-Naira exchange, Nigerians, presiding over Africa’s largest economy, grapple with the lower values of the Gambian Dalasi and Liberian Dollar.

This disparity reveals Nigeria’s economic challenges amidst ongoing reform efforts, affecting trade and underscoring the urgency for robust fiscal strategies to fortify the nation’s economic resilience.

Regrettably, the economic reform’s hardships have gone beyond currency shame, evolving into alarming security threats amid the crisis.” Kidnapping cases, once sporadic, now demand urgent attention as they persistently recur, posing a growing concern that requires immediate intervention.

Recently, tragedy struck in Ekiti State as two of the three monarchs returning from a security meeting in Irele-Ekiti were brutally killed by armed men between Oke-Ako and Ipao-Ekiti in the Ajoni local government area.

Among the victims were David Ogunsakin, Elesun of Esun-Ekiti, and Olatunde Olusola, Onimojo of Omojola-Ekiti. Fortunately, the third traditional ruler, Adebayo Fatoba, Alara of Ara-Ekiti in Ikole local government, narrowly escaped the attack.

“It’s truly disheartening! Traditional rulers face abduction attempts, resulting in the unfortunate loss of two lives. What hope remains for the safety of the common people? The situation is becoming overwhelmingly distressing.” – Anonymous

In the same vein, a report by the International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) reveals that gunmen fatally attacked and killed another traditional ruler, Segun Aremu, Olukoro of Koro in Kwara State, at his palace on Thursday night, February 1.

The assailants also abducted his wife and two others during the invasion around 8 p.m. The incident was condemned by AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, the state governor, who called it reckless and abominable.

AbdulRazaq urged security agencies to swiftly apprehend the perpetrators, rescue the abducted individuals, and bring the assailants to justice. The tragic incident occurred in Koro Ekiti, located in the Ekiti Local Government Area of Kwara State, near the border with Egbe in Kogi State.

This could be traced to the economic approach of President Tinubu, coined ‘Tinubunomics’, which has not lived up to its promises and instead has exacerbated hardships for many Nigerians.

Abisoye Oluwatobi, a policy analyst, remarked, “It’s unfortunate that a country facing economic turmoil due to the present reform policy is also grappling with alarming insecurity everywhere. This poses a significant threat to growth in certain regions, tarnishing the overall public image.”

Read also: Tinubu asks Senate to confirm five directors of CBN board

He further explained that the potential implication is heightened pressure on food security, discouraging farming, and creating unnecessary tension in the region due to the widespread hunger among Nigerians.

“I wonder if foreign investors would consider investing in a country that seems challenging to govern, given the plethora of inconsistent policies ranging from fiscal to monetary—a trial-and-error approach.” Olugbenga Alawode, an information and technology economist, pointed out that this might raise concerns about the overall investment climate.

In addition, beyond currency shame is the climate change saga. Nigeria is grappling with the harsh realities of climate change, as evident in the unexpected weather shifts experienced across the country.

According to a report by Hikersbay, towards the end of last year (specifically December), there was a scorching heat wave, with temperatures soaring above 34 °C (93 °F). This departure from the norm has brought the effects of climate change to the forefront, impacting the daily lives of Nigerians.

The Climate Change Performance Index (CCCPI) sheds light on Nigeria’s mixed performance in addressing this crisis. While the country ranks high in greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption, it falls short in implementing effective climate policies and transitioning to renewable energy sources.

This imbalance poses significant challenges to Nigeria’s agricultural sector. Climate change exacerbates its vulnerability with erratic rainfall patterns, prolonged droughts, and an increased frequency of extreme weather events like floods and storms. These factors contribute to decreased crop yields, livestock losses, and reduced agricultural productivity.

Halima Bello is a smallholder farmer in Ogun State that with each passing year, she watches as her crops wither under the scorching sun or get washed away by torrential rains.

“We used to rely on our farms to feed our families and send our children to school,” she says, wiping away tears. “But now, it’s becoming harder and harder to make ends meet.” Halima struggles to adapt to erratic weather patterns, prolonged droughts, and devastating floods, leaving fields barren and livestock struggling to survive.

As the debate over climate change heats up globally, the voices of those most affected often go unheard. Yet, for Halima and millions like her, the urgency of the situation is palpable.

“We need help,” she pleads, her eyes reflecting a mix of fear and determination. “Without support to adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change, our way of life—and our very survival—is at stake.”

Agriculture is a major source of livelihood for many Nigerians and plays a key role in providing food for the country. Any disruptions caused by climate change can directly affect food security.

According to an earlier report by BusinessDay, reduced crop yields and livestock losses can lead to food shortages, higher food prices, and limited access to nutritious food for vulnerable communities.

An expert said, “Nigeria’s mixed performance in climate policy and renewable energy adoption suggests a lack of adequate adaptation measures and investments in climate-resilient agriculture.

Read also: Insecurity: Allow creation of state police— PDP governors tell Tinubu

“Without sufficient adaptation strategies, farmers may struggle to cope with the changing climate conditions, further exacerbating food insecurity and economic instability.”

Nigeria is among the few developing countries to have set an economy-wide emissions reduction target. The National Developmental Contribution (NDC), updated in 2021, pledges an unconditional contribution of 20 percent below business as usual by 2030 and a 47 percent contribution conditional on international support. The conditional target was increased from 45 percent to 47 percent. Nigeria also has a zero-net target by 2060.

Despite these targets, fossil fuels are expected to remain a significant part of the Nigerian mix in the near future. The country’s fossil-based energy generation infrastructure shows elements of its colonial past.

Nigeria’s oil and natural gas reserves are why, for six decades, multinationals have operated there, especially in the ecologically devastated Niger Delta. Accordingly, there are costs for structural change towards more renewable energies, making these technologies less competitive than fossil fuels.

However, the Nigerian government has set a target of generating at least 30 percent of its renewable energy from electricity sources by 2030. To achieve this, it has taken several steps to encourage investment in renewable energy projects, promote energy efficiency measures, and bolster the regulatory framework for renewable energy investments.