..they’re part of Nigeria’s wasteful projects
Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar says the Federal Government ought to reduce its 2020 budget by at least 25 per cent to reflect the economic realities of the times.
Atiku in a statement on Tuesday by his Media Office, said Nigeria could not be on the verge of economic ruin while still maintaining a Presidential Air Fleet with more planes than those it had been begging for loans.
The statement read, “Not only have we squandered our opportunities, we have also squandered the opportunities of our future generations by bequeathing them debt that they neither incurred or enjoyed.
“As a matter of utmost urgency and importance, I call on the Federal Government to take immediate steps to drastically reduce its expenditure, especially on wasteful projects, such as maintenance of the Presidential Air Fleet, and unnecessary renovations of buildings that could serve as is, limousine fleet for top government officials, overseas travels and treatments, and the ₦4.6 billion Presidential villa maintenance budget, etc.
“In fact, Nigeria must sell those planes and channel the revenue to other vital areas of need, while taking additional steps to reduce the cost of running our government.
“The Federal Government cannot continue to justify these unsustainable numbers by pointing at Nigeria’s debt to GDP ratio. That is only half the picture.
“Our debt to revenue ratio paints a much more realistic portrait of our financial situation, especially as our revenues are majorly tied to a mono product, oil and gas, which are very vulnerable to global shocks.”
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2019 general elections added that Nigeria was facing a crisis, and could not continue to keep up appearances by taking out more loans to prop up the nation’s economy.
“That will amount not just to robbing Peter to pay Paul, but robbing our children to pay for our own greed!” Atiku said.