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Atiku: Nigeria not working because of Tinubu’s trial-and-error policies

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has criticised President Bola Tinubu over economic policies he introduced in the past one year in his office saying they have been detrimental to the living conditions of the poor, the rich and foreign investors.

Atiku, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in 2023 elections, said Tinubu’s economic programmes have only succeeded to “pauperise the poor and bankrupt the rich”.

He said this in a statement issued to review the President’s one year in office.

Atiku condemned the policies, stressing that they have failed to create prosperity, but created a hostile environment for businesses.

“President Tinubu’s policies do not create prosperity. Instead, they pauperize the poor and bankrupt the rich. They spare no one. Nigerian citizens, the majority of whom are poor, are going through the worst cost-of-living crisis since the infamous structural adjustment programme of the 1980s.

“The annual inflation rate at 33.69% is the highest in nearly 3 decades. Food prices are unbearably higher than what ordinary citizens can afford as food inflation soared to 40.53% in April, the highest in more than 15 years.

“President Tinubu’s policies create a hostile environment for businesses, big or small. The private sector is overwhelmed by Tinubu’s dismal policies and overburdened by his failure to address the policy fallouts.

“The manufacturing sector, which holds the key to higher incomes, jobs, and economic growth, has been bogged down by rising input prices, higher energy and borrowing costs, and exchange rate complexities.”

He further criticised his main rival in the 2023 presidential election for implementing policies that have driven foreign investments out of Nigeria since he assumed office a year ago on May 29, 2023.

Atiku blamed the loss of foreign companies to other countries on the free-float leading to devaluation of naira.

He added that Tinubu’s foreign exchange policies had not had any positive impact on Nigeria’s foreign trade balance, contrary to policy expectations.

“In particular, the free-float and the resulting devaluation of the naira has not resulted in an appreciable improvement in Nigeria’s trade balance,” he stated.

“President Tinubu’s policies have failed to attract foreign investments into the country despite all the posturing and media hype by the President’s men. Time is running out for the government, and Tinubu must act fast to save the economy.”

Recently, Atiku revealed that a merger between him and the 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, is possible to wrest power from the All Progressives Congress in 2027.

The opposition leader said the scenario has created a hostile environment for businesses across the country with many companies exiting the country, listing some of the companies as, “Unilever, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Procter & Gamble (P&G), Sanofi-Aventi Nigeria, Bolt Food, Equinor, among others had exited Nigeria citing reasons including foreign exchange complexities, security concerns, and high operational costs.”

He said, according to the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), nearly 20,000 jobs may have been lost due to the departure of 15 multinational companies from Nigeria.