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Soludo: Nigeria is broke but govt officials live extravagantly

Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State has advocated a drastic reduction in the cost of governance in Nigeria. Speaking at the special edition of The…

Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State has advocated a drastic reduction in the cost of governance in Nigeria.

Speaking at the special edition of The Platform, an event organised by The Covenant Nation to facilitate national development, Soludo lamented that the nation is broke but government and elected officials continue to live in denial and show off flamboyant lifestyles at the detriment of the masses.

The governor said as a way to curb the developing crisis from escalating further, political officeholders should be placed on the national minimum wage.

Soludo expressed that Nigerians are hungry, broke and poor, but the ruling class continue to live extravagantly at the expense of the common people.

He said: “Let’s come clean and straight with Nigerians. Nigeria is very poor and broke but the lifestyle of government and government officials does not show it, especially with the obscene flamboyance in public display.

“The poor are hungry and impatient, let’s not annoy them more with our insensitivity. In this case, I agree with Reverend Father Mbaka, who said elected governors should also earn minimum wage. I agree that we should be paid that so that we can feel that as well.

“In Anambra, I have not received a kobo as salary since I assumed office. I have donated my salary to the state. It is symbolic. It is not much. I think generally, the system is in denial. There must be some signalling, it is just the symbolism of this.”

While calling for an end to wasteful spending in governance, he stressed that elected officials must always remember they are in office based on public trust.

He said: “That is why I proposed reinventing the new code of conduct for public officers. For the federal government, the actual projecting revenue comes to about N6,160 per Nigerian, per month.

“For the states, except Lagos and a few states, most states have revenues amounting to less than N3,000 per resident, per month. It is from this shares per citizen that we are expected to provide all the infrastructure, debt service, pay salaries and pensions, build schools and provide everything.

“For each of our wasteful spending, let’s be conscious about the fact how many citizen share we are squandering. Once we lose this consciousness about the public trust we bear, the society dies irredeemably.”

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