COVID-19: “My Position On Economy Misreported” – Tinubu Says

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National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has clarified that he did not call for the “literal printing of new naira notes” in his suggestions on the economic measures to be taken to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said: “Such a suggestion is extremely far-fetched and has never been on my mind. It is unfortunate that my prescriptions were so badly misunderstood and misreported.”

Pic 15. APC Chaieftain Chief Bola Tinubu briefing State House Correspondents 1

Tinubu, who marked his 68th birthday in a low-key on Sunday, had issued a statement calling on the Federal Government to maintain spending and temporarily suspend Value Added Tax (VAT). He said: “To be clear, I do not want, nor am I calling for the Federal Government to print a single new naira note.

What I do want is for the government to meet the coming economic challenges with a swift, bold and effective spending plan. Those who, until now, would spend their time beating up on straw men should give us their own plans. If, that is, they even have any.”

The National leader called for increased stipends to the poor by widening the net and substantially increase the beneficiaries of the “anti-poverty” stipends. Tinubu said the COVID-19 pandemic called for unity of purpose among Nigerians in order to defeat the virus. According to him, prudent fiscal policy is generally “countercyclical.”

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“As the private sector shrinks, government does more,” he added. He also advised the government to announce a tax credit or partial tax reduction for companies or firms while the Value Added Tax (VAT) should be suspended for the next 2-4 months, saying this will help lower import costs and protect against shortages.

He also called for lowering of interest rates “to spur borrowing and private sector activity.” Tinubu stressed that the minimum the federal government can do was to “stick to its naira budgetary expenditures.”

“In fact, government should increase naira expenditures by at least 10 – 15 percent during an emergency. Allocations to state and local governments should be included in this addition. If not, we risk subnational recessions in important sections of the country,” he advised.

Other measures Tinubu suggested is the need for government to “accelerate spending and actual work on key infrastructural projects particularly regarding transportation; protecting the people against food shortages.” He said: “We need to protect the people from food shortages and high prices. As such, we must quickly improve farm-to-market delivery of agricultural produce.

Also, government should initiate a crash program to decrease spoilage of agricultural produce by construction of storage facilities in local marketplaces in and around major cities and towns throughout the country.

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“We must establish a strategic grain reserve. Government should help ensure supply by establishing minimum premium price for certain food products.

“If economic trouble does come, government must be willing to freeze payment of certain consumer-related private debts. Evictions, foreclosure and light and water cut-offs might have to be suspended.

Suspension or partial reduction of payment of school fees for our most indigent families must be considered (that is when schools reopen) while government offers temporary support to the schools themselves.”

The National Leader noted that, with the virus in Nigeria despite the myths that it cannot survive in African climate or the black man is immune to it, everybody must unite to defeat the disease.

“If we carry forth in our usual ways, we may well carry ourselves into national disaster. Normal practices will not suffice.

We all must do better lest we all fail and suffer the grave consequences of collective failure. We pray that this terrible cloud will pass from us. However, we must prepare for the possibility that it may linger to rain hard upon us,” he added.

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THE ROTTEN FISH: CAN OF WORMS OPENED OF APC & TINUBU'S GOVERNMENT OVER NIGERIA'S ECONOMIC DOWNTURN

WATCH THE CRITICAL ANALYSIS AND KNOW THE RESPONSIBLE PARTIES TO BLAME FOR NIGERIA'S ECONOMIC CHALLENGES, WHILE CITIZENS ENDURE SEVERE HARDSHIPS.
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Watch this episode of ISSUES IN THE NEWS on 9News Nigeria featuring Peter Obi's Special Adviser, Dr Katch Ononuju, 9News Nigeria Publisher, Obinna Ejianya and Tinubu Support Group Leader, McHezekiah Eherechi

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About Uchenna Mbam 9159 Articles
Uchenna Mbam is a reliable full time Blogger on news media as Editor/Publisher. Be free to Contact me via Facebook @Mbam Uchenna or Email me @uchennambam23@gmail.com

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