The Muslim Media Watch Group of Nigeria, MMW, has challenged the state governors and lawmakers at all levels to confront hunger, poverty and the high prices of food items facing the country with deserved sincerity.
This is even as the group called on the National Assembly to suspend its plenary till next month and direct all members to proceed to their states for crucial master plans with their governors on how to reduce the cost of food items.
Rising from its extraordinary meeting on Monday in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, MMWG advised that states’ resources be used to purchase food items and positioned in all local government headquarters with heavy military surveillance and sold at reduced cost to the people for the time being while efforts on high agricultural revolutions could be worked upon in all states.
In a communique jointly signed by its National Coordinator, Ibrahim Abdullahi and National Secretary, Dr Nasir Balogun and made available to our correspondent in Abuja, the group maintained that the governors and members of the national and state assemblies are closer to the people than the President, “hence they should be able to utilise justifiably the increased federal monthly allocations being obtained for the benefit of the masses.”
“Nigerians are now facing double tragedies of increase in the pump price of fuel, food and other essential commodities without corresponding benefits from anywhere; thereby resulting in serious hardship for the people.
“With a higher increase in the Federal Account Allocations Committee, FAAC monthly allocations to states since June last year, poor masses of Nigeria are in serious hardship that has increased tremendously,” it lamented.
The group, however, singled out Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum and commended him on his welfarist approach to governance and called on all his colleagues to emulate him by putting the interest of the masses in their hearts instead of political propaganda.
MMWG also called on President Bola Tinubu to stop the further increase in the prices of goods that are produced in the country, wondering why cement and other materials are on the high sides daily despite the raw materials being sourced locally.
On corruption, the group declared that “no anti-corruption fight could succeed in Nigeria, as all economic crimes are bailable no matter how humongous.”
“With plea bargaining, looters could steal any amount but must be ready to refund a certain percentage of it. Nigeria has left its funds and property in the hands of thieves,” it stated, maintaining that economic crimes be criminalised and made unavailable with the removal of plea bargaining from the Administration of Criminal Justice, ACJ.
To stop the astronomical increase of dollars to naira, the group called for the reactivation of moribund industries realistically, alleging that funds meant for this purpose and that of agriculture are being diverted, “whereas a nation without export value cannot rank its currency along with that of productive and exporting nations.”