A United States of America, USA, Magazine, The Economist, has reviewed the first term of President Muhammadu Buhari, of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and concluded that Nigerians became poorer during his first four years in Office.
The Magazine, in the publication, which was posted on its website, said that while the Nigerian economy was “stuck like a stranded truck”, the average incomes fell during the four-year period, covering 2015 to 2019.
They advised Nigerians to prepare for another disastrous four years, which Buhari started on May 29.
The Economist in its report, stated that based on the thinking of the International Monetary Fund, IMF, the average income of Nigerians “will not rise for at least another six (years)”.
The report partly read: “The Nigerian economy is stuck like a stranded truck. Average incomes have been falling for four years; the IMF thinks they will not rise for at least another six (years).
“The latest figures put unemployment at 23 percent, after growing for 15 consecutive quarters.
“Some 94 million people live on less than $1.90 a day, more than in any other country, and the number is swelling.
“By 2030, a quarter of very poor people will be Nigerians, predicts the World Data Lab, which counts such things.”
The report said that the naira is overvalued, adding that, this is because the government has spent decades neglecting basic public goods, such as roads, schools, and electricity.
It said: “Where urgency is needed, Buhari offers only caution. Few are holding their breath for any more drive in his second term, which began on May 29.
“Yet Officials are postponing a crisis, not averting one. Consider borrowing. The debt-to-GDP ratio is 28 percent, but Nigeria collects so little in tax that interest payments swallow about 60 percent of Federal revenues.”
The Economist, maintained that public finances will be healthier, if the government raised the price of fuel, which is imported by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and sold on at a loss.
It added that last year, subsidy was worth at least 0.5 percent of the GDP, noting that, this was almost what the government spent on health care.
“Politicians are scared to end the subsidy. An attempt to do so in 2012, led to massive protests.
“Although the government has expanded the school-feeding programme and is working on a safety net for the poor, most citizens get few benefits from the State”, it added.
For Nigeria to prosper, it disclosed that the government will need to harness the potential of its 200 million citizens.
In its reaction, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, warned Nigerians to be prayerful, saying that, the second tenure of Buhari will be disastrous for the country.
It revealed that the aspirations of Nigerians will not be met under the leadership of the President.
The National Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus, stated that the report by the foreign Magazine, is a mere confirmation of what Nigerians know and have been passing through.
“We all know the millions of people whose jobs had been lost; we also know that retirees are not paid, while workers are praying daily to get paid for jobs they have done.
“We do not need any prophet to tell us that the last four years had been traumatic for Nigerians. But the sad thing is that, there is nothing on the ground to show that the next four years under the President will not be worse. It will be disastrous, especially when nothing is being done to secure the country and its people”, Secondus said.