The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has taken a swipe at the President Muhammadu Buhari for taking Nigeria’s debt profile to “unsustainable level”, saying that the administration would put Nigerians into poverty and economic deprivation.
Speaking on Channels Television’s political programme, Sunday Politics, a former minister of Aviation and Special Adviser to the PDP chairman on External Engagements, Osita Chidoka expressing fear that the country is heading to unavoidable debt crisis.
According to him, the Federal Government’s decision to keep maintaining a fuel subsidy that benefits only the rich; dual foreign exchange rate of N305 and N360 will impact the finances of the country negatively sooner than later.
Mr Chidoka added that with the current debt profile, the federal government’s projection of taking 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next ten years will not come to fruition.
“It can’t happen. The unsustainable debt profile is going to put more people in poverty. The fuel subsidy, which is actually subsidy to the rich is going to put more people in poverty.
“The money that is going for education, the money that is going for health care is sunk into fuel subsidy. We need to have a conversation about which direction the country’s economy is heading to.
“Are we going back to days when we had excess crude account when we had savings or are we going back to the years before the military left office when we had unsustainable debt model.
“I think for a country talking about lifting people out of poverty, we need to focus on allowing the economy to be private sector-led and so far, the regulatory environment in Nigeria is unpredictable,” he said.
The party also berated the federal government for allegedly mismanaging the country’s diversity, advising the Buhari-led government to galvanise Nigerians and focus more on achieving a national consensus.
While emphasizing that Nigerians should be allowed to decide who takes over mantle of leadership in 2023, the opposition party advised President Buhari to ignore the recent call by Pastor Tunde Bakare to determine who succeeds him.
The PDP, therefore, challenged Mr Buhari to deliver to Nigerians a free, fair and credible election as an enduring legacy before leaving office.