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Elijah Udofia: Abiodun’s approach at mitigating current economic hardship



To say that things are hard in Nigeria these days, is to say the obvious. The current economic downturn, which of course is experienced globally, is putting everybody on the edge. Households in the country are going through difficult times making ends meet. The rise in prices of goods and services and the downward slide of the nation’s currency, the Naira, has put a huge burden on the people.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the body saddled with the responsibility of carrying out empirical analysis of economic trend in the country, in its Consumer Price Index (CPI) report for December stated that the consumer price index (CPI), which measures the rate of change in prices of goods and services, rose to 28.92 percent in December 2023 — up from 28.20 percent in the previous month.

The Bureau added that the latest figure marks the twentieth consecutive rise in the country’s inflation rate in 2023.
The bureau said the December 2023 headline inflation rate showed an increase of “0.72% points when compared to the November 2023 headline inflation rate”.

To show how the country fare on her inflation rate yearly, the NBC said, “On a year-on-year basis, the headline inflation rate was 7.58% points higher compared to the rate recorded in December 2022, which was 21.34%,” the report reads.

It went further to said that the headline inflation rate (year-on-year basis) increased in December 2023 when compared to the same month in the preceding year (i.e., December 2022).”

Taking a monthly analysis of what inflation look like, the NBS stated that the headline inflation rate in December 2023 was 2.29 percent, which was” 0.20 percent higher than the rate recorded in November 2023 (2.09 percent)”.

From the above data, it is clearly shown that things are not looking good for an average man and it is further compounded by the drop in value of the Naira against foreign currencies, especially the Dollars. The trend is so severe that prices of goods and services change in a twinkle of an eye. A product sold for N100 in the morning would jump up to N200 in the evening making Nigerians grow more and more despondent by the day.

In a situation like this, the common man in the street may ask, “is anyone listening to the cries of the people? Is anyone taking notes of what the people are going through and what plans are put in place to ameliorate the pain and agony the people are going through.

For governor Dapo Abiodun, the man overseeing the affairs of Ogun State, his answer is “yes, we are listening to your cries, yes, we are taking notes and yes, we are making plans to provide succour in the face of the seemly insurmountable challenges.

Abiodun who spoke to his people in a press conference said, “today, we come together in the face of the prevailing economic realities vis a viz: high inflation and currency devaluation in the country. As an Administration, we are not oblivious nor insensitive to these challenges being faced by our citizens. I therefore on behalf of this Government, want to appreciate the perseverance, patience and understanding of all the good people of Ogun State.

For Prince Abiodun, the present economic situation is just a transient phase that will soon pass. He is of the opinion that what we experience now as a nation are just necessary sacrifices that has to be made towards ensuring a greater tomorrow.

To show that he as a person, and the administration which he is the captain understands the impact the current economic situation in the country has on the lives of the people, announced a N5 billion intervention fund to cushion the affect of rising cost of living and that of high inflation in the State.

Highlighting what the money would be use for, informed the people that a minimum of five exercise books would be given to all 850,000 students in the public primary and secondary schools.

Similarly, at least 100,000 pupils in the public primary and secondary schools in the state would receive a one-time N10,000 education support grant. Government will probide all 27,600 indigent students in tertiary institutions nationwide with an education grant of N50,000 each.


Since it is generally acknowledged that health is wealth and to safeguard the health of the people, the governor disclosed that his administration would provide insurance health cover for over 70,000 beneficiaries to include pregnant women, children, the elderly, market women and other members of the informal sector while pregnant women, under the Ibidero Scheme, would be providing free pre-natal care, an additional N5,000 per birth and free post-natal care in the State Hospitals and Primary Health Care Centers across the State.

He went further to informed that provision would be made for food palliatives that would include rice and other food items would be given to about 300,000 households across the State.

For the workers, whom the governor regards as the “engine room and worthy partners in the ‘Building Our Future Together” agenda, the State Government will commence offsetting the backlog of inherited deductions with the commitment of N500 million monthly payment towards outstanding deductions.

Further more, it is noteworthy that the State government has continue to pay N10,000 transport allowance to all civil servants for the last eight months.

Governor Abiodun was full of praise for President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for his continuous efforts in navigating the complexities of the nation’s economic landscape and said his dedication to steering the ship through this turbulent times has not gone unnoticed.

Without doubt, Nigerians are going through hard times. Like the American author and motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar said “difficult roads always lead to beautiful destinations”. governor Abiodun has this for the people “let me assure you that the present economic situation is just a transient phase that will soon pass. Whatever we experience now are just necessary sacrifices that we have to make towards ensuring a greater tomorrow”.

Now that the State government has set the ball rolling, the people of Ogun State should be rest assured that their governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, is not unmindful of their plight and is ready to address them headlong.

Mr. Udofia writes from Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.