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Hardship Will End Soon, FG Tells Aggrieved Nigerians

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, on Thursday, assured Nigerians that the narrative on the current hardships would be different within the next one year.

Idris spoke at the 50th anniversary lecture of PUNCH Nigeria Limited held at the Civic Centre, Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, Victoria Island, Lagos.

The minister, who represented President Bola Tinubu at the lecture by the Nobel laureate, Prof Wole Soyinka, assured Nigerians that Tinubu would deliver on his campaign promises while appealing for patience.

“Of course, the challenges are going to be there; no one is pretending that they do not exist, but we see a situation where the story would be quite different in another one year.”

The information minister urged Nigerians to take a cue from Soyinka, who said he usually waited a year before assessing a new government in power.

“Maybe go back to what Professor Wole Soyinka said when he visited President Bola Tinubu, I listened to the journalist who was asking him to comment on the current administration and what he said, ‘even in my character, I wouldn’t talk until whoever is in office stays for at least one year.’”

Speaking on the efforts being made by the government to take the country out of the woods, the minister said, “Only a few days ago, we invited captains of industries,  Dangote, the BUA, the Elumelu, and ministers, among others, and we all locked ourselves in a room for about three and a half hours discussing how Nigeria is going to get better, and everyone in that room, from the private sector, from the central governments and the sub-nationals, believe that this country is going to get better.

“Also, the Nigerian Labour Congress has complained about the hardship in the land, which may be true, but we are happy that 24 hours after now, they also found it necessary to take action. Most of the 15-point demands that labour made in October of last year have been met; those still pending cannot easily be met. For example, in that agreement, there was the issue of the CNG buses that the government has committed over N100bn to.

“Of course, we know we cannot just buy CNG buses, processes are in place. The President said there would be a wage award of N25,000, and at the same time, labour complained, and the government said we should listen to them. He brought them in, and they had a thorough conversation. They agreed they needed nothing less than N35,000, which the president approved after doing the numbers.

“Two days ago, there was also a resumption of the suspended N25,000 monthly payment for three months that the government approved for 15 million households in this country.”

Discussing the ministerial panel established by the President, the minister mentioned that the panel had completed its work.

The information minister implored the media ‘to please report us well.’

“This is our country; we do not have any other country. If we run down businesses, and there is no other place for all of us to go to,” he added.


Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=94224

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