President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has boasted, saying the removal of fuel subsidy would pave the way for investments in alternative energy sources, infrastructure, and public services.
Tinubu said these investments would contribute to a stronger and prosperous Nigeria.
Speaking at the grand finale of the ongoing three-day combined convocation of the 37th and 38th academic sessions of the University of Ilorin on Monday, Tinubu said the pains and inconveniences associated with removal of oil subsidy will be short-lived.
Represented by the Minister of State for Education, Dr. Yusuf Tanko Sununu, Tinubu said people should look out for its potential long-term benefits.
He, however, admitted that Nigerians are enmeshed in economic pains as a result of the oil subsidy removal.
“While the short-term gains are expected with attendant pains, please look forward to the potential long-term benefits.
“The removal of subsidies can pave way for investments in alternative energy sources, infrastructure, and public services that will contribute to a stronger and prosperous Nigeria.
“During this transition, let us remain united as a nation, supporting one another and working collectively towards finding solutions.
“It’s a challenging journey but by embracing innovation, conserving energy, we can navigate through these difficulties and emerge stronger as a nation.
“Remember, change often comes with its share of hardships, but it is through resilience and cooperation that we can shape a better future for ourselves and generations to come,” Tinubu said.
In a related development, the Federal Government has commenced a cash transfer programme to cushion the effects of the fuel subsidy removal with the enrollment of veterans, widows, orphans of fallen heroes, and caregivers for the palliatives.
The Ministry of Defence in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has flagged off the process at the Aguiyi Ironsi Conference Centre, Umuahia, Abia State on Saturday.
At the event, the National Chairman of the Nigerian Legion, Maj Gen Abdulmalik Jubril(Rtd), emphasised that the initiative is a testament to President Bola Tinubu’s commitment to touch the lives of at least fifteen million households to reduce hardships.
He described the gesture as “one of a kind,” noting that the households will receive N25,000 for three months which will go a long way in cushioning the effects of the inflation.
Also speaking, the Abia State Chairman of Nigerian Legion, Ambrose Nnabugwu, said the programme was aimed at mitigating the hardship and suffering caused by the removal of fuel subsidy in the country.
Nnabugwu applauded the move, which he said will serve as a relief to families who will benefit from the palliative.
A Director in Joint Services, Ministry of Defence, Jude Alozie, who represented the Minister of Defence, assured that all government economic programmes would be open to all veterans, families of fallen heroes and their dependents.
“This is the first time there’s been a deliberate attempt to capture veterans and we know that it will only get better. We are trying to create a national safety register for veterans and with this enrolment, you’ll be entitled to all programmes of the federal government,” Alozie told the beneficiaries.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Christopher Musa, represented by Brigadier General Caius Akan Baushe, urged the veterans who were present at the inauguration of the enrolment, to take the message to the hinterlands where their members are to ensure they get enrolled for the payment.
Meanwhile, one of the retirees and the Legion Chairman of Ohafia Local Government Area of Abia State, Legion Kalu Ndem, thanked Tinubu for the relief.
He expressed optimism that the palliative if received, will enable them to solve some of their problems, albeit temporarily.
But, he advised the Federal Government to empower their wards/children instead of the palliatives. This, he said, would guarantee steady incomes.