Fuel subsidy removal: N500bn palliatives too small – Okojie

July 16, 2023

Fuel subsidy removal: N500bn palliatives too small – Okojie

…says he’s in Abuja as lawmaker to work for Edo people

Following the excruciating pains and suffering felt by Nigerians in the aftermath of the removal of the fuel subsidy, a member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Prince Odianosen Okojie has said that the N500 billion proposed to cushion the effects was grossly insufficiency.

The lawmaker who represents Esan North East/South East Federal Constituency of Edo State however enjoined Nigerians to keep faith with the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, assuring that succour was underway.

Okojie who spoke with journalists in Abuja on the heels of the express approval accorded to the Tinubu’s request of the N500 billion for approval by the House also assured that the funds will not hijacked or misappropriated.

He said: “In all form of modesty and fairness, Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, the President of Nigeria is like a father to me and I love his style of leadership because he believes in human capital development. And I must tell you, he has hit the ground running. The removal of subsidy was a fantastic idea. Just wait and see. We will begin to enjoy the dividends of democracy very soon. And for the passage of the N500 billion palliatives, I think the fund in question is even too small. Nigerians deserve the best and I must commend the president for the general giant stride.

“If you look at it very well, the hardship is everywhere. Everybody is feeling the impact no matter how rich or wealthy you are. I have an SUV that I used to fill my tank with about N30,000 but now, it’s about N80,000. So, think about it.

“Everybody is feeling it and the palliatives came in handy just to cushion the immediate suffering of the Nigerian people. So, I think the president was appropriate to have yielded these palliatives out to Nigerians and I really commend him for that. He has also declared state of emergency on food security. I mean, that’s good. I just love this president and I can’t love him less because of his policies. Government is run by policies. I think with his kind of policies and best practices we have seen so far, Nigerians will smile in the coming days.

“There are some leaders who believe in delegation and there are other leaders who also believe in following up on things or how to vet things done. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu with his antecedents has demonstrated good leadership. This issue getting to ordinary Nigerians, be rest assured that the palliatives will get to the right quarters. He has good hands who advise him on how to do the good things at the right time and I believe he will follow it to the later and Nigerians especially the vulnerable will get it.”

Assessing the performance of the House so far, Okojie commended its leadership for taking proactive measure to stabilize the parliament.

“The leadership of the House so far has performed excellent. The majority leader of the House is from my State. He doubles as the father-figure to me. We know his antecedents. He’s a professor. You can see the House is stabilized and everybody is happy with the leadership. I am personally happy. I speak for myself and on behalf of my colleagues. It’s a stable House and we are looking forward to greater opportunities”, he said.

Okojie also highlighted his priority areas in government, saying that his interest was exclusively in his people.

“My interest in politics is about the people. I have been in politics for a number of years now. And I realize that for you to strive in politics, you need to be with the people. I am from Uromi, Edo State, Esan North East Local Government. And my people know me very well. We are always together. Where I come from is a PDP dominated zone. Since 1999, APC hasn’t won any elections there. I am the first person to have won an election. It’s because of the love my people have for me. They turned out in their numbers to support me. For me, the only thing I will do to reciprocate the good gesture is to work for them and that’s why we are doing everything within our ability to make sure we are able to deliver the dividends of democracy to them. I am in Abuja to work for my people. Whatever I need to do, lobbying, persuasion, negotiations, whatever it is, I will do just to get something for my people.

“I am very passionate about my people. I visit home regularly and I know their needs. My people lack good roads, water. My Foundation has been doing this for the past 15 years. We subsidize hospital bills for my people and I really want to continue on that pedestal. We also encourage them with petty trading money. With this platform, we are going to do a lot more. Just before I got inaugurated, I was able to cover some streets in my local government with solar lights. That was a personal project. I also intend to do more of those solar projects so that we can light up the entire community. These are the things we want to do”, the lawmaker stressed.

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