Govt’ll continue to borrow because past regime left empty treasury –Osoba

Former Ogun State governor, Olusegun Osoba, has said President Bola Tinubu’s administration cannot shy away from borrowing as the previous governments left an empty treasury.

He spoke while trying to justify the N7.3 trillion ways and means funds borrowed by the Tinubu administration.

“When treasury is empty, when the previous administration was borrowing to pay salaries, what else can you do except to borrow for now to fill the gap. That does not mean that the culture of borrowing will go on forever and ever. It’s only serving us for now.”

On hoarding of cash, he also stated that Tinubu would sign an executive order to encourage Nigerians against hoarding money.

“During my discussion with President Tinubu on Christmas Day, he disclosed to me that he is preparing a document to encourage Nigerians to bring out hidden funds that are currently out of the banking system and causing cash scarcity.”

Osoba in the interview, further justified the reason for the delay of President Bola Tinubu’s visit to the victims of the Plateau State attack on Christmas eve.

He also commented on the visits of the opposition parties to the affected communities, stating that the opposition parties are only doing what they should, which is to create robust critical engagements which will help the ruling party “analyze their statements, reaction and see if whatever we find will be useful.”

“There is no Nigerian who will not cry for what happened in Plateau, the unnecessary killing. We need to have a really well-organized broad-based policy to curtail these inter-communal conflicts that are beheading us all over the country. I assure you that he (TINUBU) is very much on top of it.

“On the issue of token appearance, it is not just a token. He must be ready, when he is going to go there, it is to tell them steps and actions that he is going to take to contain this situation that has been going on.

“For the opposition parties, that is their role. There must be robust engagements. If they don’t engage us robustly, how would we know some of our shortcomings and challenges? When Obi went to Plateau for a token appearance, it’s part of the robust engagement.

“When we were in ACN we robustly engaged Goodluck Jonathan heavily. So, they are playing the role expected of the opposition. What do you expect of them? We are in government and they throw punches. We would defend the punches and where necessary, we give a little brushing of their faces too.

“But I agree that they are within the barns of opposition in a way that they are being critical and we analyze their statements, reactions and see if whatever we find will be useful.”

He also said the effect of the subsidy removal is expected but will last for a short while.

“Yes, there is hardship and problems. We expected it. The time president Tinubu assumed office, there was not a single allocation for oil subsidy. The previous administration did not allocate a kobo. What else did you expect from the president? He had no choice than to announce the removal of subsidy, if not he would have bridged the law immediately, he was sworn in if he continued with the subsidy.

“Naturally, the multiplication effect of the oil subsidy started immediately. It is common sense. I don’t have to be an economist. Cost of transportation shot up by almost 500-1000 percent. That naturally would affect every aspect of our lives. This I know very well and I am aware. It has affected every area and there is no segmentation. Both the poor and Rich, even in the private sector.

“Naturally, we don’t expect people to hail the government in every aspect. You will hear, go back home and then rearrange things.”


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