Adams Oshiomhole, the senator representing the Edo North Senatorial District, has stated that President Bola Tinubu took on a formidable economic challenge inherited from the previous administration. Oshiomhole made this observation in the aftermath of a closed-door meeting with Vice President Senator Kashim Shettima at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The former governor of Edo State emphasized that some of the decisions made by President Tinubu’s administration mark the initial steps towards revitalizing the economy. He lauded President Tinubu’s courage and determination to address corruption within the subsidy regime and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), while also calling on Nigerians to exercise patience.
In the midst of the ongoing debate surrounding the removal of fuel subsidy, Oshiomhole expressed confidence that the Federal Government and organized labor will swiftly resolve the associated issues. He indicated that President Tinubu recognizes the adverse effects the subsidy withdrawal has on Nigerians and is committed to implementing swift measures to alleviate its impact.
Oshiomhole stated, “President Tinubu recognizes the immediate effects of the subsidy withdrawal that are already being felt. People are experiencing discomfort, and therefore, an immediate solution is imperative. Our discussions and the subsequent Tuesday meeting highlight the urgency of this matter, especially considering its detrimental impact on the most vulnerable segment of society.”
Addressing the potential solution to the issue, Oshiomhole suggested utilizing the substantial savings accrued from ending the subsidy, approximately N7 trillion. He proposed reallocating a portion of these savings to enhance wages and mitigate the escalating cost of living. He stressed that the process need not be protracted and emphasized the need for prompt action.
Oshiomhole’s active participation in discussions between the Federal Government and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) reflects his commitment to finding a viable resolution. He described the previous meeting as productive and conveyed the government’s intention to review and respond to the TUC’s demands.
The former governor outlined the rationale behind utilizing the savings, stating, “If Nigeria can save about N7 trillion by ending the subsidy, the Federal Government can allocate a portion of those funds to augment wages. This money would enter the federation account and be distributed to all levels of government, allowing each tier to manage the increase in wages effectively.”