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APC governors back subsidy removal, flay fuel hike

Governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) under the aegis of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) have backed the federal government on the decision…

Governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) under the aegis of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) have backed the federal government on the decision to remove petrol subsidy.

The governors expressed their support Friday during a courtesy call on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

They, however, expressed concern over the sudden hike in petrol prices following the president’s inaugural speech.

Chairman of the PGF and Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma, spoke to State House reporters after the meeting with the President.

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He condemned the price hike on “old stuck” and called on Nigerians to support the government’s decision to remove the subsidy.

“We are here today as members of the APC to fraternize with you as our leader, and congratulate you on your election as President, and Commander-in-Chief.”

“We are using this opportunity to express our support for you at this trying time in our history,’’ he said.

Uzodinma noted that the President had started well, by placing the economy and welfare of the people on a priority list, with honesty of purpose.

“We are aware of your capacity and excellent track record,’’ the PGF Chairman stated.

Governor of Borno State, Prof. Babagana Umara Zulum, said the development of the national and sub-national economies remains interwoven, assuring that President Tinubu would receive their support to succeed.

On his part, Tinubu said improved livelihood for Nigerians remained a top priority of his administration, with more people-focused economic policies.

He said the national and sub-national governments would work together on the minimum wage, which already required “soul searching.’’

“We need to do some arithmetic and soul searching on the minimum wage,’’ he said. “We will have to take a look at that together, and the revenue. We must strengthen the source and application of our revenue.’’

“This meeting is not strange to me, and the content of the meeting is so valuable. The camaraderie is very stimulating. This is about the Nigerian project, not Bola Tinubu,’’ he said.

He said the multiple exchange rates would be streamlined, noting that governance was a continuum.

In his remarks, the Vice President, Sen. Kashim Shettima, called on the governors to rally around the President as he tackles the challenges that stagnate the economy, like the oil subsidy and multiple exchange rates.

“Let us rally around the President and not bulge, there are vested interests that may want to resist the subsidy removal. Its removal will free resources for the development of your states,” he added.

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