Tinubu said he put in place palliatives and other measures to relieve Nigerians of the pain caused by the removal of fuel subsidies and convergence of foreign exchange.
President Bola Tinubu has once again acknowledged that his decision to end the fuel subsidy regime, as well as the convergence of foreign exchange rates, have brought untoward hardship to Nigerians.
The President, however, said the tough times Nigerians are currently going through are a necessary sacrifice to guarantee a better for the country.
He said these while speaking at the opening of the 19th All Nigeria Editors Conference organised by the Nigerian Guild of Editors in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State capital, on Wednesday, November 15, 2023.
Represented by the Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, Tinubu said, “The removal of subsidy on petrol and the convergence of the foreign exchange rate were inevitable decisions to save the economy from suffocation.”
He added, “Though Nigerians are going through tough times in the short term, it is a necessary sacrifice that we must make to guarantee a better future.
“That is why we have put in place palliatives and other measures to cushion the effect of these hard times, which is a bridge to the renewed hope agenda, where we will all have lasting smiles on our faces as we turn the tide together.”
Tinubu said having recognised the economic impact of the removal of fuel subsidy, his administration put in place necessary measures to lessen the hardship on Nigerians through several interventions that are designed to serve as palliatives in the short and medium term.
He listed the provisional wage increment of ₦35,000 monthly for six months; the establishment of an Infrastructure Support Fund for states to invest in critical areas that will create an enabling environment for businesses; and the launch of a ₦100 billion CNG bus rollout programme, to deliver CNG-powered buses as some of the interventions.
The President, therefore, appealed to editors to disseminate positive information that can enhance investors’ confidence in the country.
“I urge you to provide positive media coverage that can enhance investor confidence and attract the needed investments that fuel economic development in our county. The media’s role in portraying a favourable business environment contributes to the stability of financial markets.
“Due to your role in setting agenda for the government, the media on its own can advocate for policies that promote economic growth and technological progress and follow up on these advocacies through robust engagement on your various platforms,” he added.
While urging editors to fight fake news, the President said, “As you are aware, we are faced with the proliferation of misinformation, disinformation and false narratives which threaten the fabric of our society, and it is our collective duty to combat this menace. Through fact-checking, responsible reporting, promoting media and digital literacy, we can fortify our defences against the corrosive effects of fake news.”