• Wednesday, February 28, 2024
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BusinessDay

Obi to Tinubu: Cut 60% of governance cost too

Obi slams Tinubu over insecurity, says Abuja’s mansions more protected than Nigerian lives

Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, said that Nigerians require a 60% reduction in governance expenses rather than fewer individuals in travel entourages.

Obi’s statement followed President Bola Tinubu‘s 60% reduction in international and local travel entourages, described as part of the presidency’s cost-cutting measures by spokesperson Ajuri Ngelale.

In the statement posted on his verified X account on Wednesday, Obi, deeming the measure insufficient, advocated for a comprehensive review of the 2024 budget to eliminate wasteful items.

He emphasised the need for a substantial reduction in the overall cost of federal governance, directing savings towards vital sectors such as education, healthcare, and poverty alleviation.

Obi called for transparency regarding the actual savings generated and their allocation.

He said, “The just announced 60% cut in the size of federal official entourages on travel is one positive step towards the reduction of the cost of governance and a way of halting wastage.

“But this measure is just scratching the surface, as it is limited in scope and can only lead to a very negligible saving. We are yet to be told how much savings this will amount to.

“While this modest step may be somewhat commendable, what is desirable should be both a 60% reduction in federal official overseas trips as well as a 60% reduction in the size of delegations.

“Most importantly, what our current economic reality demands is a 60% reduction in the total cost of governance at the federal level. This implies that the recently passed federal budget needs to be revised to cut all wasteful and unnecessary items.

“This is the level of cost-cutting and savings that can meaningfully impact the present state of the economy. This level of cut in the cost of government should lead to substantial savings.

“Such savings should be used to fund the productive sectors of the economy and the much-needed social investments, especially in three key areas: education, healthcare, and the migration of millions of Nigerians from poverty.

“Most importantly, it is not enough to announce arbitrary cuts in the size of federal official entourages. The nation needs to be informed of how much the measure will save and where such savings will be applied.”