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OBI urges FG to slash governance cost

by Maryam Olaniyi
Peter Obi22

The 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has welcomed the recent decision of the Federal Government to cut official travel entourages by 60%.

He, however, noted that more substantial reductions in governance costs are needed to impact the economy.

Obi made the call in a statement posted on his X page, on Wednesday.

He described the entourage cut as “one positive step towards the reduction of cost of governance and a way of halting wastage,” but stressed that “this measure is just scratching the surface, as it is limited in scope and can only lead to a negligible saving.”

“We are yet to be told how much savings this will amount to. While this modest step may be commendable, what is desirable should be both a 60% reduction in federal official overseas trips as well as a 60% reduction in the size of delegations,” Obi said.

The former Anambra governor stressed that Nigeria’s economic troubles demand even bolder action – a 60% cut in the total cost of governance at the federal level.

“This implies that the recently passed federal budget needs to be revised to cut all wasteful and unnecessary items. This is the level of cost-cutting and savings that can meaningfully impact the present state of the economy,” he noted.

Obi urged that the savings from governance cuts be channelled into productive sectors and social investments in education, healthcare, and poverty alleviation.

“Such savings should be used to fund the productive sectors of the economy and the much-needed social investments, especially in three key areas: education, healthcare, and the migration of millions of Nigerians from poverty,” Obi noted.

“It is not enough to announce arbitrary cuts in the size of federal official entourages. The nation needs to be informed of how much the measure will save and where such savings will be applied,” he said.

The presidential hopeful decried token populist gestures by the government, insisting details must be provided on cost-cutting measures for transparency.

“For a government that has made a hobby of indiscriminate borrowing, the only way to salvage the economy is to drastically cut the cost of government by reducing wasteful expenses and spending on inessential luxury items,” he said.

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