I’ll Restructure, Pay Nigeria’s Debt – Tinubu

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I’ll Restructure, Pay Nigeria’s Debt – Tinubu

By Trek Africa Newspaper

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu



President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has promised members of the Pan Yoruba Socio-political group, Afenifere that he will restructure, pay Nigeria’s debt and alleviate the poverty among the citizens.

Tinubu visited the leader of Afenifere, Pa Reuben Fasoranti in his house in Akure, the Ondo State capital and assured the leaders of the Yoruba race that he was aware of the pains of Nigerians and was working towards alleviating them.

The spokesperson of Afenifere, Comrade Jare Ajayi who was at the meeting said Tinubu promised the leaders present at the meeting that he was aware of the pains Nigerians are going through since the removal of subsidy from petroleum products.


Fasoranti in his speech made available to reporters after the meeting said Tinubu, being the first member of Afenifere to become the president of the country must live up to the expectations of not only the Yoruba race but the entire country.

The 98-year-old Afenifere leader in his speech said “In Yorubaland, we do not seek any special treatment or unfair advantage. We know you are our own but you now belong to all Nigerians, Your mandate was freely given by the people of Nigeria and blessed by God. Therefore, Mr President continues to govern fairly and courageously and with the fear of God.

“That is what we expect. That is what we know you will do. You know that since the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, the Yoruba people, led by Afenifere, have been at the forefront of the campaign for the restructuring of Nigeria.

“It is now incumbent on you to address this issue of constitutional reforms with courage, fairness and determination. We know we cannot return to the past, but we have to seek a future where regional competitions would bring out the best in our country as they did during the First Republic.

“We seek therefore a true Federal Republic that would reflect fiscal federalism. If derivation principle is good for oil, why is it not good for Value Added Tax for example? We believe a review of the 2014 National Constitutional Conference would help you in charting the course.

“For the people of the South-West, restructuring also has a more pressing meaning. Today, Nigeria has a population of 200 million which would double in the next 25 years to 400 million.

“However, the South-West is facing an avalanche of migration from the other zones of the country to the extent that in 25 years’ time, if the current trend continues, the South-West would be home to 50 per cent of the population of Nigeria.

“By this time the states of Ekiti, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun and Oyo would be home to at least 200 million people. We need to plan for this eventuality on a regional scale. We need to be prepared so that our region will not be overwhelmed by imported challenges.

“Mr President, please also seek for institutional reforms that would strengthen our federation and make Nigeria safer and more prosperous. Try and balance the budget and execute capital projects that would create more employment. We thank you for welcoming the idea of state policing.

“We want each of the geopolitical zones to have greater responsibilities for security, food production and infrastructural development. Since the removal of the fuel subsidy, which was costing Nigeria 10 billion dollars yearly, the state governments have been receiving hefty allocations from the Federation account.

“Mr President should persuade the governors to allow this change of fortune for the states to reflect at the grassroots so that life can be better for our people. They should not just buy rice and yams for the people. ”

In his response, Tinubu was quoted to have shown positive responses to the requests of Afenifere on the issue of restructuring, institutional reforms and the principle of derivations.

Quoting Tinubu’s responses, Ajayi said “He (Tinubu) said that when he took the oath of office, that he pledged his allegiance to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, that he knows what he is facing. I am quoting him now; “I prayed for it, I danced for it, I campaigned for it and I got it. I know the enormous responsibility so don’t pity me Baba just sit down and relax.

“He (Tinubu) assured Nigerians that the struggle he understood and that he is trying to build the structures that will not be reversed. He said that the structure he is trying to put in place in Nigeria economically, socially and politically would be such that it would bring Nigeria back to where it is supposed to be.

“He (Tinubu) also said that Nigeria is paying the loans and that the loans would be offset as soon as possible. He assured that Nigeria would very soon get out of the problem it is facing presently.

“On the issues of restructuring, he said that he is aware of the need to restructure Nigeria but that a proper foundation must be laid before bringing the restructuring in place such that if it is done in a rush without a proper foundation, the restructuring may collapse very soon but it would be done.

“On the hardship, Nigerians are facing, he (Tinubu) appreciates the pains Nigerians are going through and said that very soon Nigeria will overcome it, that is a matter of time, that the kind of the policies government is implementing will bring a positive solution to the challenges.

‘He (Tinubu) said that we should grow our foods. That we should eat the food we grow. Doing so would wean us from depending on foods from foreign sources. That a nation that fully depends on food from outside cannot get it.”

Earlier, Tinubu had visited Owo to condole with the family of the late Governor of the State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu.

The President, accompanied by Chiefs Baba Bisi Akande and Ch Pius Akinyelure, was received by the widow of the late Governor, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu.

During the visit, the President, who had a closed-door meeting with Mrs Akeredolu, also visited where the late Governor was laid to rest.

Ondo State Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, and his deputy, Chief Olayide Adelami, were also at the Akeredolu’s residence.

Family members who received the President alongside the former First Lady are the Late Akeredolu’s First son, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu Jnr; Dr. Teni Micheal and her husband, Olatunde Micheal; Mrs. Yejide Rusewe, and her husband, Engr. Lakunle Rusewe; and Babajide Akeredolu.

Also present were Akeredolu’s siblings, Prof. Wole Akeredolu and Toyin Akeredolu. The Chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state, Engr. Ade Adetimehin also joined the family during the meeting.

Speaking after the visit, Mrs Akeredolu appreciated the President for the condolence visit.

She said, “As you are aware, the President, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, paid his condolence visit to my family. Present at the visit are my children and extended family members.

“On behalf of my family, I appreciate Mr. President. We understood he could not attend the burial ceremony due to the dictate of Yoruba culture. He could not have attended the burial of his younger brother.

“Coming today is a big deal because we are in a better atmosphere. I also express my profound gratitude to the Southern Governors for their immense financial contributions to the burial. Most especially, Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who singlehandedly brought Aketi’s remains back to Nigeria. We appreciate this huge show of love and we are grateful and forever indebted to him.

“I requested that Mr President see where Aketi has been laid to rest and he followed me. We are deeply grateful to Mr. President for coming. He’s indeed, Aketi’s brother and friend.

“I told Mr. President, yes, Aketi has left but he lives because he left behind legacies. It is our wish that those legacies continue and are built upon where necessary.”

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