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Cost of governance: Tinubu govt faces tough hurdles

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President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, last week, announced a slash in the travel expenditure of government officials by 60 percent.

Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, who briefed State House correspondents, said that for foreign trips, the president will be accompanied by 20 persons, while the Vice President will have just five persons.

For local trips, the president will be accompanied by 25 persons, the Vice President 15 persons, while the First lady will have 10 persons.

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The first test for Tinubu after the announcement was his visit to Imo State on Monday during the second term inauguration of Governor Hope Uzodinma.

Reports emerged that the President’s entourage was well over 25 which he earlier announced for local trips.

Some observers say the development was expected as civil servants and other politicians would frustrate the president’s plan.

Commenting on the issue, an Abuja-based communication strategist, Murkthar Suleiman, said one major hurdle Tinubu would face was that of vested interest from civil servants who might want to inflate figures.

Suleiman also urged the president to scrap some Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government, adding that their allocation should be diverted to infrastructural development.

Speaking with DAILY POST, he said: “The major interest Tinubu is going to face is that of vested interest; there are people who have vested interest in this thing.

“I have always said that it’s good policies and good politics that make good governance; so, if the policies are right but politics is not okay, it will be difficult to translate to anything meaningful.

“In as much as he’s the Commander-In-Chief, he still has to dance to the sway of people around him.

“How will he ensure that those vested interests understand that it’s better to cut the cost of governance as opposed to what we are running, how will he do it? But he’s the one that said he asked for the job so we shouldn’t pity him.

“The major thing is vested interest from the civil servants; we know that the high cost of governance is not in maintaining the agency or doing the work, but it’s in budget padding.

“So, how can we tackle that which is just one street away from corruption?

“Cutting the cost of governance opens the space for certain monies to be transferred to other places, which in turn translates to a good standard of living for people and job creation.

“We should look at things realistically as against the emotional approach.

“When we say cut the cost of governance, we are saying cut the unnecessary cost.

“For example, you can’t just move the president and his security team, you have to spend about half a billion to fuel his jet, security details and so on.

“The president needs to cut the cost of some MDAs. For instance, the president recently made some appointments into the arts and culture side of the economy, some of these things are just repetitive.

“One begins to wonder how they created all these agencies in entertainment, because they are doing the same thing. These are part of the things that need to go, we don’t need them; they don’t translate into anything of national interest.

“The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs should go, I hope they scrap it because it’s a money laundering scheme, they should chop off that ministry and all the monies allocated there should be sent to the president’s office, so he can reroute it to other reasonable things.”

Meanwhile, the Senior Pastor of Awaiting The Second Coming Of Christ Ministry, Adewale Giwa, has charged the president to listen to the yearnings of Nigerians and reduce the cost of governance.

According to Giwa, Tinubu should start cutting the cost of governance by reducing the finances allocated to the National Assembly and state governors.

“In this difficult time, nobody should advise a leader to reduce the cost of governance.

“In 2024, Nigeria’s budget of N200m to feed Aso Rock animals was senseless.

“I see the president as a listening leader and I hope he will quickly reduce the cost of governance in the interest of Nigerians.

“As we all know, the country is facing a serious economic issue and it is not wonderful for the citizens to see their president budgeting N200m to feed animals.

“Cutting the cost of governance must start from the National Assembly to the governors.

“Tinubu put the cart before the horse; what he should have done upon assumption of office was to declare borders that were closed by his predecessor open.

“Selling petroleum at the rate of N650 per litre is out of it; introduce price control and get things functioning,” he told DAILY POST.

Cost of governance: Tinubu govt faces tough hurdles

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