*says increase in tax, hike in electricity tariffs will compound woes of the masses
By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
A former Federal Legislator, Hon Shehu Bawa ABG has described the just announced hike in petrol pump price by the Federal Government as insensitive, saying the action would further compound the woes of Nigerians who he said were already gasping for breath from the effects of previous increases which according to him had pushed up prices of essential commodities mainly patronized by the masses to the rooftop.
He said increase in prices of virtually all goods and services would bring more hardship on Nigerians whose purchasing power he said was in the poorest state ever, adding that inflation was already biting hard due to free fall of the Naira against other foreign currencies, currently at almost 500 Naira to a Dollar.
He expressed dismay at the high level of insensitivity displayed by the current administration in the face of barrage of security and socioeconomic problems confronting Nigerians, reminding the president to of his promises to make life better for Nigerians on which strength he said they elected him.
He wondered how could an Administration that pledged succour would instead give pain and hardship.
” We must remember the present crops of politicians in power who called themselves the progressives came out in large number and mobilized Nigerians across the length and bredth of this country in January 2012 when former president Jonathan intended to hike fuel price to just 100 naira.
” They lampooned him and called him all sorts of unprintable names , saying he was anti-masses but today Nigerians know who the real anti-masses are.
” This administration promised to fix our refineries and make them serviceable , five years after that promise remains a mirage.
” They met price of PMS at 87 naira which they said was too high and promised to make it 50 naira if Nigerians voted them into power but alas , hike to 151.56 Naira is what we have gotten.
” Only people with selective amnesia would not remember the lofty promises and state of eldorado we were told we would attain if we elected the present Administration but what we got is virtually the unpleasant opposites of what the APC administration pledged to give us.
” Nigerians are still trying to cope with difficulties of living in harsh conditions , they are yet to recover from previous effects of bad Government policies of closing our borders without developing our local agriculture and manufacturing sectors to cushion the resultant hardship that had come with such policies , instead to soften the hardship what Nigerians are given is infliction of more pains from their elected officials.
” If we don’t speak out , we may end up buying fuel at 300 naira or even more before this administration’s term elapses in 2023. ” ABG cautioned.
He urged the Federal Government to be considerate and be sensitive to the pulses of Nigerians who he noted were in dire situation of abject and perpetual poverty , calling on the Second Arm of Government , the Legislature who he said were closer to the people , to prevail on president Buhari to reverse the latest increase , according to him , the Legislators would come back to their Constituencies after they would have finished serving their terms.