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Monday, January 16, 2012

Fuel Subsidy Removal: CSO laments cost of living in Nigeria

Coalition of Civil Society Organisation have lamented that the recent New Year gift of president Goodluck Jonathan has further impoverished Nigerians as cost of sustainable living has gone up with several margins.

As said by them, historically when prices go up in the country, they rarely come down, therefore they fear the removal of fuel subsidy by the government would further impoverish Nigerians, especially the artisans who depend on their daily income to make a living.

The civil society group also said that the removal has forced an increment which has doubled across the country including the cost of transportation, food, health care, and cost of running businesses in addition to the cost of generating electricity through the generating sets, whereas most salaries is now worth at least 35 per cent less as goods and services have tippled on average.

NaijaAgroNet gathered that although the minimum wage remain N18,000, the government at all levels have not implemented this wholesomely, even as the Civil Society Group argued that government could save money to embark on capital projects if it cuts waste in governance and tackle corruption head-on, especially in the public service system.

The group pointed out that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is currently prosecuting former Speaker of House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, his counterpart from Oyo State, ex-police offer, Adebayo Alao-Akala among others for over N200 billion, should be intensified to encourage ordinary Nigerians to make sacrifices.

They further said that in the 2012 budget, approximated N1 billion has been voted for‘feeding’ in the presidency, which translates to estimated 3m per day, while the same budget allocated N1.7 trillion wage bill and N675 million to generate power in the Aso Villa and VP’s residence respectively.

Meanwhile, following the early hours national broadcast by President Goodluck Jonathan, the fuel pump price was reduced from N141 to N97 per liter, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has directed its members and sympathizers to stay at home.

This is coming as the Central Bank Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi has said on Channels TV that Nigeria loses N100 billion daily, throughout the weeklong strike, which today is on its sixth day.

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