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Tinubu Unveils Manifesto, Vows to End Petrol Subsidy, FX Crisis

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Tinubu Unveils Manifesto, Vows to End Petrol SubsThe All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Candidate, Bola Tinubu, in his 80-page Manifesto unveiled in Abuja yesterday, vowed to end the controversial petrol subsidy gulping trillions of Naira annually, and also tackle forex crisis hindering the economy, if elected President next year.
In a related development yesterday, Aisha, wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, in an interview on BBC, declared that the ruling APC would win the 2023 presidential election and “hand over to another APC government.”

Tinubu’s campaign policy document tagged “Renewed hope: Action Plan for a Better Nigeria” was unveiled at the State House Banquet Hall, alongside the inauguration of the APC Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) by Buhari.
In the manifesto, aside from phasing out fuel subsidy, Tinubu promised to accelerate full implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act and implement additional favourable policies to attract investment in deepwater assets within six months.
He said: “I will ensure the stability of petroleum product supply by fully deregulating the downstream sector and ensuring that local refinery capacity will meet domestic consumption needs.

“We shall phase out the fuel subsidy yet maintain the underlying social contract between government and the people. We do this by dedicating the money that would have been used on the subsidy to fund targeted infrastructural, agricultural and social welfare programs ranging from road construction to boreholes, public transportation subsidies, and education and healthcare funding programs.
“In this way, the funds are more directly and better utilized to address urgent social and economic needs. Our planned approach will not only mitigate the price effects of deregulation but will also result in the significant expansion of public infrastructure and improvement of public well-being.
“Subsidy removal and deregulation are, however, only part of the solution. To further increase our refining capacity, we shall focus on the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries and shall consider, as a model, the joint venture partnership arrangements implemented by other leading oil-producing states and global petrochemical firms.”

On forex crisis hindering the economy, the document stated: “The recent dip in our exchange rate is primarily due to global supply and production shortfalls caused by global factors well beyond the scope of our control. Our diminished levels of oil production and the modest capacity of our manufacturing sector to expand production both serve to compound the pressure on the naira.
“Further compounding our difficulty is the fact that we are tied to an ineffective regime of multiple, somewhat arbitrary, exchange rates. This situation gives rise to financial dislocation, currency speculation and arbitrage. These practices divert much-needed funds away from productive endeavors that could employ hundreds of thousands of people and create products that improve average living conditions.

“To ensure that exchange rate policy harmonies with our goals of optimal growth and job creation driven by industrial, agricultural and infrastructural expansion, we will work with the Central Bank and the financial sector to carefully review and better optimise the exchange rate regime. Our economic policies shall be guided by our desire for a stronger, more stable Naira founded upon a vibrant and productive real economy.”
In the document, Tinubu promised to establish a highly trained and disciplined anti-terrorist squad to tackle insecurity in the country.
He also assured that the Police would be re-positioned to deliver on its primary duties of community policing and maintaining law and order through crime fighting and prevention.

“Military units will be better equipped with tactical communications gear and new vehicles to give them a greater communications and mobility advantage over criminals, bandits and terrorists.”
He said his government would implement measures to eliminate attacks on vital national infrastructure, saying this would be known as Critical Infrastructure Protection (CIP) Plan.
The manifesto indicated that integral to this effort would be the deployment of modern technologies, tools and equipment to end crude oil theft, prevent vandalism of national assets and reduce, to the barest minimum, environmental pollution of the Niger Delta.

‘Ready to Hit the Ground Running’

During the unveiling of the manifesto, Tinubu said he and his running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, were more than ever ready to hit the ground running from day one if elected Nigeria’s President.
Tinubu restated that the country needs an “experienced torchbearer” to guide it through the doors of security, prosperity and greatness.
He said: “It is, therefore, fitting that we are unveiling the Tinubu/Shettima Action Plan for a Better Nigeria today. This Plan is not only a roadmap to a prosperous future, it serves as notice to the Nigerian people that, if elected, Senator Shettima and I shall work tirelessly to reach that promised future from the first moment of the first day we enter office.

“The doors to security, prosperity and greatness are open to us. We must step through these portals, guided by a torchbearer with the experience and mettle to shoulder the task ahead. Nothing short of this will suffice.
“I seek to become the next president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria because I know the way. My experience and past performance assure that. It will be through collective effort and national endeavour that we join hands, cross divides, and achieve our vision.”

The APC presidential flag bearer said his campaign roadmap was borne out of interactions with Nigerians across the country who shared their needs and aspirations with him and Senator Shettima in the course of their traveling round the country.

“I ask you to join Senator Shettima and I on this journey. We have traversed every part of our nation, listening to the concerns and yearnings of Nigerians for a more prosperous and equitable society – better able to acknowledge and nurture the dreams of her people. We share the peoples’ desire for a peaceful Nigeria where we all coexist in fairness, prosperity and with balanced representation in positions of authority.
“After visiting and meeting our compatriots; young and old, poor and rich, educated and uneducated, Christian and Muslim; we recognize that no Nigerian wants empty answers to hard questions at this hour.

“The country does not need fancy promises or foreign experiments. Nigerians seek sustained progress and reform through stable governance and proven leadership.
“We need true and innovative solutions that address the specific challenges of each of our 36 states and our over 200 million people. We need our own Miracle on the Niger River,” he added.
He also pledged to give great importance to “Lead and deliver bold and assertive security measures to enable a strong yet adaptive national security architecture that will obliterate terror, kidnapping, banditry and violent crime from the face of our nation.”

President Inaugurates PCC

President Buhari yesterday inaugurated the Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) of the APC, with a pledge to be at the forefront of electing Tinubu as his successor.
He said electing Tinubu would consolidate the achievements of his administration as the presidential candidate has the capacity, visionary leadership and track record to do more.
The President said: ”It would be disastrous to allow a situation that will lead to the reversal of the progress our country has made. Let me add that I joyfully accept the position of the chairman of the campaign council we are unveiling today.
”Our candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, is too well known for his capacity and can-do spirit. He stands tall in his track records as a democrat, a champion of the rule of law, a man at home in every part of our country, and a truly visionary leader. All you need to do is think of Lagos in 1999 and 2022!

”I, therefore, want to assure all party members and supporters of our government that I will be at the forefront of this campaign.
”This election is even more important than the election of 2015 that brought us into power. The cost of losing the gains our country has made is much more than the need to stop the hemorrhage that led to our coming together nearly nine years ago.
”I want to charge every member to put in all their efforts during the next four and half months of the campaign to ensure we record a resounding victory in all our elections nationwide. The future of this country is safer in our hands.”
The President described the APC presidential candidate as ”the Jagaban, my friend, partner, and brother.”

‘APC will Hand over to another APC Government’

Aisha, wife of the President Buhari, in an interview on BBC yesterday, declared that the ruling APC would win the 2023 presidential election and “hand over to APC government again.”
Speaking on the 2023 elections, Aisha said the ruling party would emerge victorious, adding, “I thank God for giving me the opportunity to be the First Lady of Nigeria and I think that position is such a priceless position. I pray to God to grant us good excitement and we will hand over to APC government again.”
Aisha asked Nigerians to forgive the ruling administration if it hasn’t met their expectations after seven years.

She said Nigerians placed high expectations on the current administration when it assumed office, adding that the government had done its best.
She said: “The expectations on us were too high. People expected so much from us and maybe after seven years we have not done to their expectations.
“Only God knows what is in somebody’s mind, as human beings, you can’t just say you are right or you have done what you should do. So, the government, the administration, they have really tried, they have done their best but maybe still not the best to others.
“To them, they have done their best, so, we must apologies to Nigerians whether we have met up with their expectations or not.

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BREAKING: Emefiele finally appears before Reps committee after threat of arrest

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Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, on Tuesday finally appeared before the House of Representatives Committee, investigating the Naira swap exercise.

The Committee and delegation of the CBN are currently meeting at the National Assembly.

The meeting commenced around 12:05 pm after over one-hour behind closed doors.

It would be recalled that several threats of arrest were issued by the House and the Committee on Thursday after Mr Emefiele shunned the House.

The CBN boss had announced an extension of the deadline for the new currency swap till 10th February. However, the committee has insisted that Emefiele must appear before them.

At the commencement of the meeting, the Chairman of the Committee, Ado Doguwa said the CBN boss provided reasons for missing previous invitations.

 

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Court dismisses ex-presidential candidate’s suit seeking Buhari’s sack

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A Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday dismissed a suit by a former presidential candidate of Hope Democratic Party, HDP, Chief Ambrose Albert Owuru, against the election of President Muhammadu Buhari, the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the 2019 presidential election.

The suit seeking the outright sack of President Buhari was thrown out by Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo on three major grounds.

Parts of the grounds are that the suit constituted a gross abuse of court process, statute barred and was an affront to the supremacy of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

Besides, Justice Ekwo held that the suit was baseless, frivolous, irritating and vexatious in its entirety.

Owuru had, in the suit, applied for an order of court to declare the presidential seat vacant and swear him in as the authentic winner of that election.

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We’ll secure, unite Nigeria – Peter Obi promises Nigerians

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The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, LP, in this year’s elections, Mr Peter Obi, has promised to bring back a new Nigeria where every citizen will be proud to belong.

He lamented that presently, Nigerians are ashamed to identify themselves as Nigerians because of the many challenges the country is faced with.

Speaking in Kaduna on Wednesday while flagging off his presidential campaign in the North, Peter Obi said: “Kaduna was the capital of Northern Nigeria where every Nigerian was proud to belong, hence we started the campaign here in Kaduna. We are about to bring back that Nigeria where everybody was happy to belong. Kaduna State represented productivity in the North. It represented what was good in Nigeria. And that is what we want to bring back. We are tired of hearing stories.”

According to him, Kaduna State hosts the best military formations in the country, it is supposed to be more secure than any part of the country, adding: “But there are so many security challenges in the state. We will secure and unite Nigeria. Security will come back again.”

He noted that insecurity in the country is not because the bandits are more formidable than the government, but because of bad leadership.

“That is why the bandits are everywhere and operating almost freely, killing and causing unimaginable destruction of valuables,” he stated.

Obi assured: “We will restructure the security architecture. Security personnel will be well taken care of. We will ensure their lives are taken care of so that their families are taken care of in the event of death.”

He added: “Datti and I will change this country from consumption to production country because of the high prices of things. All the vast lands in the north will be centres of agriculture. Kaduna State again will become a processing centre. The Bank of Agriculture, (BoA) will finance food production in Nigeria and all the support groups, youth, women and all Nigerians, their labour for the party will not go in vain.”

In the coming elections, he explained that nobody should tell one another about tribe, religion or section, stressing that things are not sold in Nigeria based on religion, tribe or section, but all are suffering from the bad leadership of the country.

Senator Datti Baba-Ahmed, the Labour Party presidential running mate stated that those looking for peace, unity, desiring that things work fine in Nigeria should cast their votes in the coming elections in order to ensure the emergence of a new Nigeria.

He assured: “Nigeria has never gotten the calibre of presidential candidates as it is presently. Kaduna is the centre of good things in the country and hopes the people of the state will come out en masse to change the narratives of this country through their votes by electing Labour Party to power for the good of every Nigerian.

“We are people that said and do exactly what we promised to do. We are serious in ensuring the betterment of Nigeria and ensure equality in all aspects of life for all Nigerians. We promised to wipe away the tears of the common man and give them a sense of belonging. It is only Peter Obi that is saying that Nigerians should vote for him because of his credibility.”

The gubernatorial candidate of the party in Kaduna State, Jonathan Asake thanked the youths for being a great engine room of the party as well as women and the support groups, saying, “there will be inclusiveness in all spheres of life to enhance the living standards of all Nigerians because the party means well for Nigerians and Nigeria.”

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