MANY REASONS GEJ MUST CONTEST 2015 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION(1)

MANY REASONS GEJ MUST CONTEST 2015 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION(1)

“…[Jonathan] has fallen so early into the error of doing business as usual.He is the ultimate pacifier. He seems determined to run a government of the Godfathers. Every man who imagines himself to be a custodian of the Nigerian legacy, even only a portion of it, seems to have a share of his government…But can President Jonathan just please, hurry up and focus on the important issues of national interest, the same issues that he himself has identified to start with?” – Dr. Reuben Abati in “Hurry Up, Jonathan,”  May 14, 2010:

Before you think this guy is one of the inconsistent Nigerians who have nothing to stand for except seeking  patronages from anyone in power to enjoy cheap but unproductive weallth,this write-up is not about seeking government patronage (which truly would not come anyway) but in my own opinion, an objective assessment of this present administration.I besiege you to read to the last paragraph and you will be convinced. 

 

It is no more news,though not a cheering one; that Nigeria has moved from the most fraudulent country in Africa to the worst place for a baby to be born. KPMG, the global audit and financial advisory firm, recently rated Nigeria as “the most fraudulent country in Africa, with the cost of fraud during the first half of 2012 estimated at N225 billion ($1.5 billion).Does this give anyone concerns about our future?PDP and GEJ must have done excellently to achieve this great ‘feat’.Let us examine this PDP-led administation and how it has fared.

 

ECONOMY:

Generally,our economy is now doing fine.Many thanks to this administration and the imported technocrats.YouWin and SURE-P have turned out 300’000 jobs for our youths as promised(Somebody should please question them on their promises).Recent report has it that the SURE-P spent =N=2.2billion on Secretarial Services and another =N=75million on travels and tour between July and October,2012.Is this not scandalous?(When they said subsidy must go for government to be more liquid,you should understand).

Private sector is now thriving.Inflation rate and interest rate are favourable enough for private sector to expand and create chains of wealth.Oh,Nigerians are now truly transformed from 2 meals per day to one or nothing per day.Subsidy removal has really helped Nigerians to live better.There’s high investments in our refineries and all those sabotaging the functioning of our refineries have been punished.Even Mr President recently assured Nigerians that only total deregulation will bring investments to our Oil and Gas sector.Investors in his opinion are not thinkers.They will just bring in their funds because the name of our President is Goodluck even with all the dirty drama displayed at the presentation of  Ribadu-led Petroleum Revenue Task Force report and the poor politics that was played out on same.

 

There’s now fuel everywhere and the subsidy provision this year alone may climb =N=2.09 trllion according to Henry Boyo in his 24th December,2012 column.(=N=888 billion + =N=162 billion suplementary provision is just a tip of the iceberg) despite partial removal of subsidy.Pray,what is happening with all the lies and propanganda that were sold and dangerous as well as un-intelligent tribal colorations that the debate eventually assumed?

Mrs Okonjo- Iweala said deregulation will open up the market, thereby creating jobs(You can see the job that FSR is creating where =N=2.2billion was spent on secretarial services and =N= 75million on travels and tours in 4 months). She said the policy will reduce smuggling of petroleum products to neighbouring countries and reduce fraud. She said between 2006-2011, the government spent N3.7 trillion on subsidy, stressing that as at October, this year alone(2011), N1.3 trillion had been spent and it is estimated that by the end of this year(2011), N1.43 trillion would have been spent.

 Mrs Diezani Maduekwe said that the total projected subsidy reinvestible fund per annum is N1.134 trillion based on average crude oil price of US90 per barrel. Out of this, =N=478.49 billion, accrues to the Federal Government, N410.03billion to state governments, N203.23billion to local governments, N9.86 billion to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and N31.37billion as transfers to derivation and ecology, development of natural resources and stabilization funds.She said the discontinuation of subsidy will save additional resources for investment in programmes targeted at mitigating poverty and spurring economic growth. She said a robust programme structure has been developed to ensure adequate oversight, accountability and implementation of the various projects targeted to reduce the impact of subsidy removal.

The entire project will be overseen by a Board to be constituted by Mr. President. Consulting firms with international reputation will be appointed to provide technical assistance to the Board in financial and project management. Relevant MDAs will set up Project Implementation Units to drive the implementation. An independent body will be responsible for monitoring and evaluating the implementation and will report directly to the Board,” she said

Pray,if in six years(2006-2011),Nigeria spent =N=616.67 billion on the average per annum,how come we are still spending over =N=1trillion in 2012 though there is partial removal of subsidy.What problem has been solved by their heartless policy?It seems to me that the corruption acknowledged by Mr Lamido Sanusi at the Town Hall meeting organised by the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) in Lagos,is even worse now with all the revelations of fraud and corruption at various committees set up to look into peoples’ diapproval of the unpopular policy.Where is the development promised by the government?Where is all the allocation to state governments from the subsidy savings?GEJ deserves to come back in 2015!!!

Before you argue that but government is already applying the instruments of law against those short-changing the system through EFCC,don’t forget that the same government pretended to be blind when it’s obvious that it’s the friends of government and party men who are the rats eating our subsidy funds,and also remember an aide to Mr President(Mrs. Mariam Ali) once stood as sureity for one of the subsidy thieves and a member of family of the same aide (Mamman Ali), is also among the suspects on trial for alleged N3billion subsidy scam.Who is deceiving whom?

DEBT MANAGEMENT:

The news about our debts wether internal or external is getting disheartening.This is because the journey to heavy debt burden which was relieved not up to a decade ago,started like the present national debt accumulations.Our national debt started when Nigeria borrowed  $13.1million from Italy to finance Kainji Dam project in 1964.But by 2004,Nigeria’s external debt had climbed over US$35.9.The burden of this debt was too much to bear that Nigeria embarked on the journey of debt forgiveness campaign.Eventually,Nigeria succeeded but not without coughing out $12.4billion to enjoy $18billion forgivenenss in June 2005.The irony of this is that the same hand that encouraged Nigeria to part with such huge amount when Nigeria could have easily restructured her external debts and use the same funds then for developmental projects like light rail project,refineries,power etc;is still the same hand that’s goading Nigeria to go for more external debts now.

 

One wonders what happens to all the philosophies that were one time debt-aversed?Because the dummies sold to Nigerians then was that,with debt forgiveness,Nigeria would be able to save the huge sums paid in debt services and use same for developmental purposes(Sound familiar with that of FSR savings dummy) .Where are those developmental projects Madam?

 

By the time Umar Yar’Adua-Goodluck Jonathan came into power in 2007,Nigeria’s total debt was about $3billion but as at September 2012,external debt had climbed $6.29billion while domestic debt had reached =N=6.39 trillion.Yet,the NASS just approved another $7.9billion foreign loan for federal government and 23 state governments.Federal Government’s share of the loan is $4.846 billion to be paid back over 50 years including moratorium period.The alarming issue about this debt is that our textbook technocrats have begun peddling textbook lies of debt-to-GDP nonsense.It’s this kind of textbook lies that led us into SAP trap when our economy was simply mono-product as well as primary-activity based, same with blind partial deregulation of downstream oil sector when necessary palliatives were not put in place.Everything in Nigeria is always good on papers.The honest question is do we need more foreign debts at this time when Nigeria earns more from rise in the international oil prices?

 

Why do we have habits of creating wealth indirectly for the foreign nations while starving our brethren to death here?Excess Crude Account had once been depleted to the tune of $23billion while foreign reserve to about $25billion between 2007 and 2012 without tangible development across all tiers of government.Yet this account has grown considerably of recent.There is also external reserve as well sovereign wealth fund;all of these accounts/funds are kept,managed and invested abroad.Creating values for another economy of course; all in the name of saving for the raining days.Why can’t we draw from these funds now and seek for loan if need be in the so-called raining days(if they will ever come)?  

 

The argument is more worrisome because for 2012 fiscal year,Nigeria spent =N=500billion to service her debts while =N=591.764 was appropriated for 2013 fiscal year.This is the more reason why those saying we still have capacity to borrow because our present debt-to-GPD ratio is not more than 18.8%,are not making any sense to me at all.They do not care about ability to utilize the loan for its intended purpose nor capacity to pay back without default.What about cheating our nation out of opportunity to borrow for more sublime purposes in the nearest future?Indeed blind (wo)men have taken over the governance of our nation.

The table summarizes the above argument

 

Table   1                                  Debt Profile of the Federal Government

Item

Year

 

2009

2010 b

2011 b

2012

Debt Stock (US$ b)

   External   Debt

   Internal   Debt

25.74

3.95

21.80

35.05

5.05

30.60

37.29

6.26

31.03

Na

 

 

Debt Stock (N b)

External Debts

Internal Debts

3,812.63

584.60

3,228.03

5,347.27

757.28

4,589.99

5,593.16

938.63

4,654.53

Na

 

Debt Service Payments (US $ m)

External Debt

Internal Debt

3,660.25

428.00

3,232.25

3,615.88

259.44

3,356.44

3,615.88

259.44

3,356.44

Na

Debt Service Payments (N b)

External Debts

Internal Debts

542.09

63.39

478.70

542.39

38.92

503.47

542.39

38.92

503.47

Na

Source: Review of the 2011 Budget Proposals

 

Table 2     Debt Ratios for the Federal   government

Item

Year

 

2009

2010

2011

2012

Total Debt   to GDP

15.4

19.4

14.6

Na

Total Debt   to Revenue

144.3

129.4

197.2

Na

Debt   Service to Revenue Ratio

20.6

11.7

19.1

Na

Source:   Review of the 2011 Budget Proposals

 

SECURITY:

It would be understatement to say that our state of insecurity has improved.In fact,we can sleep with our two eyes closed.The level of kidnapping has significantly dropped.Boko Haram is now a thing of the past starting from June 2012 as promised by Mr President. Armed robbers now don’t operate freely.Everywhere is now safe including pipelines,seas,air,banks,markets,school,offices,mosques and churches.Our intelligence gathering system has been so fortified that crimes are burst efficiently and effectively.Despite all the over =N=1trillion budgeted for Defence,security and intelligence community in 2012,we are living witnesses to the result.I understand that the former NSA(now deceased) might have been tried for about =N=3 billion fraud.That is how we get to this level of insecurity and instead of men in power to change their ways,they enmeshed theirselves in the same old practices of deepening our state of insecurity.

 

One of the ways employed to deepen our state of insecurity is the empowerment(though temporarily it now seems,but so much dough has been made)of the ex-militant’s business -Global West Vessel Specialist Nigeria Limited (GWVSL)- with an initial Investment of the sum of USD103,400,000.00 Dollars (One Hundred and Three Million, Four Hundred Thousand Dollars) only. Inclusive of all taxes on a Contractor-financed Supply,Operate and Transfer (SOT) Concession over 10 years concession period and renewable for further 2 terms of 5 years based on performance.Who says Mr President does not deserve second term except all you folks with‘bad belle’ because the spoils of office are not reaching you?

 

INFRASTRUCTURE:

In terms of infrastructural facilities,we now have steady power supply as the aide to Mr President on facebook,twitter and other social media affairs,would want all Nigerians believe.Remember that he once conducted survey on improved power supply.What struck thinking Nigerians was how a little above 4000 megawatts would perform another miracle of feeding 150 million Nigerians with steady power supply just like Jesus fed multitude with five loaves of bread.What about $10 billion or is it $16 billion invested in power generations by Mr President’s mentor-Olusegun Obasanjo?

Our roads are getting better.The best example is the Ibadan-Lagos expressway,East-West expressway,Abuja-Lokoja expressway etc.Yes,there’s so much efforts being taken to upgrade our airports which is commendable but how many Nigerians enjoy the airport facilities?Also,our sport facilities now enjoy government commitment.The best example is National stadium Lagos.What about Presidential banquet hall of =N=2.2 billion just approved by the Federal Executive Council(FEC)? Lest I forget,Vice-President’s residence must gulp billions of naira so as to make it beffiting for our political over-lords. This is part of the reasons subsidy has to go so that government would have more funds to finance ridiculous and unproductive projects.GEJ must come again abeg.

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