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2023: What Lies Ahead Of Vulnerable Nigerians

by Salisu Hamisu Ali
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By Abba Dukawa

 

Without a scintilla of doubt, the year 2022 will go down in the annal as one of the hardest years to Nigerians Nigerians, after the excruciating pains of the civil war pogroms they underwent from 1967 to 1970. Nigerians had endured economic, security, food security, social, political, and ethno-religious challenges in recent years. It’s saddening that despite the president’s acclaimed good intentions towards the country, his indecisive actions on some really important issues of national importance are alarming, and these had cost the nation dire consequences.

The truest thing about the president he is not a thief, but the fact remains that leadership requires more than being honest that as Nigerians needs a leader in every sense, a leader who will be a rallying point for the whole nation. There has been no government in Nigeria’s history that has enjoyed the citizens’ goodwill before like the present administration, but disappointedly reciprocate the trust bestowed on him by Nigerians in very painful manners.

To be fair It will be the highest injustice for anybody not acknowledged infrastructural development recorded especially in the southern part of the country.PMB’s administration introduced many programs to alleviate economic hardship to Nigerians like Anchor Borrowers Programme and the Conditional Cash Transfer Program. Unfortunately, briefcases farmers and those close to the power benefited much than real pleasant and small scale farmers. Same with the Conditional Cash Transfer Program that targets poor and vulnerable households; all the targeted citizens are not eventually the beneficiaries.

Cost of living, Nigerians are languishing in extreme hardship; daily survival has become an uphill challenge and what people are going through now in the country is reaching the highest apogee since the late 80s. All these have happened under Baba Buhari’s corrective administration. Despite the administration having a genuine intention to restructure the agricultural sector, the policies were not being implemented with a human face because the administration looks like did not feel for Nigerians in this kind of abject unfold hardship.

In the 21st Century Nigerians are talking about daily survival when in normal circumstances there is no reason for Nigerians talks crying about food prices which beyond their affordability. In October, a report by Global Hunger Index was jointly published by the German-based Welthungerhilfe and Dublin-based Concern Worldwide. Nigeria ranked 103 out of 121 countries in the 2022 Global Hunger Index, a position that signifies the nation “has a level of hunger-stricken country which is serious. inflation reached unprecedented heights; workers purchasing power declined precipitously.

Electricity declined, like many other administration promises, which promised improved power with 10,000 megawatts but the nation’s grid collapses many times available power generation capacity fell by 981.8 megawatts between 2015 and August 2022 despite over N1.51tn intervention in the sector by the Federal Government since the current administration came on board in 2015. A document on Power Generation Trend (2013 – August 2022), obtained in Abuja from the Association of Power Generation Companies, the umbrella body of electricity producers, indicated that while available power generation capacity was 6,616.28MW in 2015, it dropped to 5,634.47MW as at August this year.

With poor economic policies, Nigeria has become a beggar and debtor nation. Citizens caught a glimpse of poor economic management as the country is paying heavily for the inebriation. Interest charges on domestic debts will drain N4.5 trillion from the 2023 budget, an increase of 243.51 per cent from the N1.31 trillion proposed for this in 2016. Debt servicing consumed N16.6 trillion in the 16 months period, January 2021 to April 2022. The administration came into office promising fiscal discipline and a departure from profligacy. Even though Successive Nigerian governments had a bad track record with debt, the Buhari regime is by far the worst. The Economist Intelligence Unit declared Nigeria’s revenue-to-debt service ratio as “the worst in the world” (January to April 2022), when up to 92 per cent of all revenue went into servicing debt. It is expected to reach 116 per cent in 2023, projects the IMF and on current trends, 160 per cent by 2027. Data from the Debt Management Office showed that the government’s domestic debt stock was N19.24 trillion by December 2021. By September 2022, it had risen to N21.55 trillion, an increase of 2.31 trillion in just nine months. Insecurity, 2022 has been an eventful year in Nigeria. 28 March, terrorists ambushed and attacked a passenger train en route from Abuja to Kaduna. They killed some passengers and abducted scores more. Every region in the six geopolitical zones is affected. But the nature of the violence and insecurity differ somewhat from place to place within Nigeria. The 2022 Global Peace Index has ranked Nigeria 143 among 163 independent nations and territories, according to the level of peacefulness. Nigeria moved three places up on the log from the 146th position it was ranked last year. The Global Peace Index published by the Institute for Peace and Economics ranked Nigeria at 146 out of 163 countries, only better than countries like Iraq, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen, and Russia, which are typically known to have been conflicting areas for a long time. The security challenges are continuing to spiral into general anarchy.

 

Nigerians thought corruption would be fought by the administration but the menace become a monster and sadly, the National Council of State presided president of the Federal Republic Of Nigerian has endorsed the pardoned of Dariye, Nyame and 157 other convicts The administration pardoned people who are still serving jail terms despite the highest court in the country Supreme Court in 2021 dismissed one of the pardoned person appealed. In spite Mr President’s well-known credentials of being incorruptible and honest as he has not been found wanting in any responsibilities assigned to him. His anti-corruption campaign has not fared any better than its predecessors because of a lack of political will to march the fighting with actions.

As the country match toward the 2023 general election, there is little or no interest from electorates on who will emerge as the next president because Nigerians voted for PMB’s in the 2015 and 2019 elections to sanitize the system after spending hours under the sun.

 

To venerable Nigerians only hope for them is wishing for Allah’s blessing, protection and to spare their lives to witness the end of administration alive. We now bow our heads down to seek Allah’s forgiveness for believing only GMB can change the country without seeking Allah’s guidance for him. As we are going for the in the next two.months elections May Lord guide our hand to vote for a leader who is going to be a good leader, not a ruler who will add more hardship on us a leader who will not runs anti- masses policies in the country. May Allah, protect our country from more harm, eradicate anything that may disrupt our peaceful coexistence, aid our incoming leader in the next 150 days to improve the country’s economic progress and forgive our wrongdoings and accept our good deeds. Happy new year to millions of venerable Nigerians.

 

Dukawa wrote in from Kano

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