NLC president, Ayuba Wabba, in a New Year message yesterday, noted that Nigerians were not feeling the positive impact of government's plans for the economy. “It is common knowledge that, in times of economic recession, governments put funds into the economy, building infrastructure and increasing social spending to reflate the economy. Not much is being done in this direction to get us out of recession. Government, on the contrary, is sticking to its neo-liberal economic management path.
“We were cautiously optimistic that the government has finally listened to the several criticisms about its lack of deft (policies) in handling of the economy. We, however, also noted that if the premise or rationale of government's economic management is along the neo-liberal model, then nothing substantive would come out of it,”
The NLC also vowed to prevent job losses by Nigerians in the telecommunications and oil and gas sectors of the economy
''How many jobs has the Federal Government and the 23 states controlled by the ruling party created in the course of the last 20 or so months, in furtherance of its pledge to Nigerians during the electioneering campaign?”
Wabba said there was confusion over which ministry or agency of government was the focal point on job creation.
“Given our stage of development, our country needs to adopt the path of planning, the path of the state as the engine of development. Government, therefore, needs to reflect and possibly go back to the drawing board in view of unforeseen challenges, in order to deliver on the promise of change,”
“At the beginning of 2016, with the naira at N197 to $1, the minimum wage was equivalent of $91.3. At N495 to $1 this has in 12 month depreciated to $36.3. The May 2016 huge increase in price of fuel from N86 a litre to N145 a litre, and the attendant inflationary pressures, should have trigged an automatic increase in the minimum wage,” he said.
Also,PDP in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, said the country was in recession because the bad policies of the current administration. “The bad policies of the APC-led government, no doubt, have occasioned this economic recession with its attendant consequences of extreme hardship, starvation, deprivation, insecurity and rise in ethnic, sectional and political agitations for self-determination,”
The party urged Federal Government to increase money supply, raise disposable income and reduce taxation, which has led to high inflation and unstable prices in the money market.