Friday, June 14, 2024

TINUBU’S ONE YEAR IN OFFICE: POLITICS IN VIEW

President Bola Tinubu was sworn in as the 16th president of Nigeria on the 29th of May, 2023. Tinubu, who contested under the All Progressive Party, pulled 8.79 million votes to defeat the other 17 candidates who contested for the seat on February 25, 2023

Within one year in office, several policies have been enacted by the president and members of his cabinet which have directly impacted Nigerians.

In he’s inaugural speech, President Tinubu highlighted key priority areas: Security, Economy, Jobs, Agriculture, Infrastructure, Monetary Policy and Foreign Policy. One of he’s notable policy was the removal of fuel subsidy.

The announcement of the removal of subsidy was met with mixed reactions with major backlash coming Opposition parties.

LP condemned the president’s action, saying it was a unilateral decision taken without any form of consultation with Organised Labour and other relevant stakeholders.

The PDP in statement noted that Atiku as President would have been briefed by experts on the ground and would strategically staggered the process and this would entail less suffering to Nigerians.

The Nigerian Organised Labour will later go on to hold a nationwide protest

In a bid to address concerns on how he’s administration would cushion the effect of Subsidy removal President Tinubu announced on 31st of July that N1tn was saved. He further announced programmes to be funded with N500 billion approved from an $800 million World Bank loan.

Some of the programmes ranged from:

1. Manufacturing: with a N75 billion allocation to boost the manufacturing sector,

2. MSMEs: N125 billion fund to earmarked to support businesses across the country. 

3. Others in Agriculture

4. Cost-Efficient Mass Transit. According to president Tinubu, provision had been made “to invest N100 billion to acquire 3000 units of 20-seater CNG-fueled buses”.

5. Lastly, the president harped on Salary Review

Also the federal government announced a N5 billion palliative for each state of the federation, including the (FCT), to cushion the impact of the removal of the petrol subsidy.

Asides from efforts to tackling Economic Hardship, when President Tinubu assumed office, he had meetings with security services chiefs. He will later go on to relieve them of their duties and appoint new service chiefs and Nuhu Ribadu as he’s National Security Adviser.

Another major highlight of Tinbu’s Politics played out during the race to elect leadership positions at the 10th Senate and House of Assembly. The tussle over the choice of principal officers lingered for days. Religion and region from which the leaders would emerge, would play a key role on who emerged as both President Tinubu and he’s Vice Shettima were Muslims.

Eventually, with the APC in majority of both chambers of the national assembly, Senator Godswill Akpabio was elected as president of the Senate, and Senator Barau Jubrin as deputy Senate president.

At the lower chamber, Tajudeen Abbass, was elected Speaker of the House and Benjamin Kalu as Deputy Speaker. A feat which will go on to facilitate a smooth relationship between the executive arm and legislative branch of government, which led to speedy approval of bills sent to the National Assembly.

Following the election of the national assembly leadership. Much speculations persisted over who will serve as a minister in Tinubu’s administration. On the 16th of August, President Bola Tinubu unveiled the portfolios for the 45 confirmed ministerial nominees. Mixed reactions followed, with many decrying the number of the ministers and worry over managing the cost of governance.

After Senate screening and confirmation by the senate, Minister Designates were inaugurated. During the inaugural Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting at the State House, Tinubu’s ministers unveiled the 8-point agenda to revive the country’s ailing economy, they are food security; ending poverty, economic growth and job creation, access to capital, particularly consumer credit, inclusivity in all its dimensions, particularly as regards youths and women, improving security, improving the playing field on which people and particularly companies operate, rule of law, and of course and fighting corruption.

Another worthy mention in the overview of Politics under the Tinubu’s one year in office is the Presidential Election tussle saga. It all began when Opposition presidential candidates of the People’s Democratic Party Atiku Abubakar and Labour Party’s Peter Obi sought redress at the lower and high court of appeal.

After coming out victorious at the appeal court, on 6th September, the Supreme Court ruled that Nigeria’s main opposition parties failed to prove claims of electoral malpractice against the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) in February’s disputed elections.

With a new year in sight after securing legitimacy of presidency, President Bola Tinubu forwarded the 2024 appropriation bill before the National Assembly which scaled through both the Upper and lower chambers.

On the first of January, President signed the N28.7 trillion 2024 appropriation bill into law. While the budget was without controversies, Senator Ningi alleged that N3.7 trillion, representing more than 10% of the N28.78 trillion budget was padded.

As President Tinubu marks one year in office, recent policies and initiatives ranging from Lagos – Calabar Coastal Highway construction, Floating of the Naira, Increase in electricity tariff have exacerbated economic hardship. With three more years to go, President Tinubu’s renewed hope agenda is still far from being fully realized.

Mana Balagbogbo, LN247 Abuja.

Mana Balagbogbo
Mana Balagbogbo
Broadcast Journalist with LN247 (Everything Politics).

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