Presidential aspirant on the platform of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Mr. Dumebi Kachikwu, on Tuesday, strongly condemned 15 per cent levy imposed on imported used cars recently introduced by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS).
The NCS last Saturday commenced the collection of 15 per cent National Automotive Council levy on imported used vehicles in addition to other import duty already being paid by clearing agents at the ports.
Kachikwu who is the Chairman of Roots Television Nigeria, in a statement in Abuja, said the new policy is meant to further wipe out and impoverish the middle class who are already experiencing the pangs of a very harsh economy.
He called for an urgent reversal of the anti-people policy already being implemented by an uncaring administration whose sole interest is how to punish the masses.
He lamented that the move will take the prices of imported used cars popularly called Tokunbo, out of the reach of average Nigerians while political office holders continue to buy vehicles and fuel them with taxpayers’ money.
Kachikwu said: “The newly introduced 15 per cent National Automative Council levy by the Nigeria Customs Service is a crazy policy meant to further punish the masses by a clueless Government.
“Tax, tax, tax. That’s all they know. Who does this benefit? They are wiping out the middle class.
“They use taxpayers’ money to buy their own official cars that they go away with at the end of their tenure, so they don’t know that the average Nigerian can no longer afford to buy a car.
“This coupled with the current exchange rate has made cars unaffordable for Nigerians.”
Economic downturn: Fasua, other experts, say, Nigeria needs home grown solutions
The Special Adviser to the Vice President, Kashim Shettima on Economic Affairs, Tope Fasua, has indicated that Nigeria has all what is needed to overcome all of its current economic challenges given the country’s abundant human and natural resources.
Fasua spoke on Thursday at a colloquium organized in his honour to mark his 52nd birthday anniversary in Abuja.
He said all that the country needs is for it to unlock its full potentials by developing its own “home grown solutions”, and taking advantage of the limitless opportunities that abound in the country to address its needs especially in the short run.
“All I see are Opportunities for development. I do not like to see the economy from the position of its challenges. I see only opportunities and prospects. This economy has not even started yet, hopefully it will start to grow with this administration
Speaking further, he advised that while the country steps up its fight against corruption, the country must not lose sight of the need to grow its economy, pointing out that this can be better achieved by looking more inwardly instead of relying on foreign interventions.
He said Nigeria can start by ramping up production which will then attract more Foreign investment Investments and ultimately create job opportunities, rake in foreign exchange and strengthen the Naira.
Speaking to Journalists on the sidelines, Director General, Bureau of Public Service Reforms, Dasuki Arabi shared similar sentiments with Fasua on the need for government to look inward for answers to Nigeria’s economic challenges.
He noted that President Bola Tinubu had in his inaugural speech set the pace with a clear roadmap towards economic recovery and that with people like Fasua having opportunity to work closely with him, Nigeria will in no time bounce back.
“We are happy he has a place in this government, as I said it we cannot get outsiders to do it for us it has to be a home grown solution to the problem that we are facing and we have a president that is giving people the space to address the challenges and problems facing this country.
“If you look at his inaugural speech he spoke about value addition improvement in foreign exchange earnings
“Most especially that message of saying use what we produce what we eat that will reduce our demand for foreign dependency on import and we look inwards to solving our problem.”
In his goodwill message, former Director General, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, (NIMASA), Dakuku Peterside said the major ingredient needed to jumpstart the Nigerian economy is quality leadership which he said is embodied in the current administration.
Five books authored by Tope Fasua were also presented at the intellectual discourse with many of them providing answers to Nigeria’s economic challenges.
The event had in attendance a crème of other prominent economic experts and policy matters.
Amb Oluwafemi hails Tinubu on diplomatic shuttle that halted UAE-Nigeria Visa Impasse
***Says billions in investments anticipated as arilines resumes
***Hails Aviation minister, Keyamo for being proactive over the issue
President Ahmed Bola Tinubu’s diplomatic moves that resolved the consular and economic relations with President of the United Arab Emirates, Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in Abu Dhabi, is a masterstroke that will usher billions of investments in to the country, the CEO of the Africa Development Study Centre (ADSC), Ambassador Victor Walsh Oluwafemi has indicated.
To start with he said, the move he said resulted in the immediate cessation of the visa ban placed on Nigerians.
Recall that the impasse was very much in force before President Tinubu emerged as the Nigerian number one citizen last May.
Ambassador Victor Oluwafemi who is a seasoned management consultant of continental level applauded the president on the landmark in a statement he personally signed on Tuesday.
He explained that the development which banned Nigerian travelers nine months ago took a new twist after President Tinubu met with the UAE leader and this has led to the immediate resumption of flight schedules for both Etihad Airlines and Emirates Airlines into and out of Nigeria which is welcoming and salutary.
Mainly Instructive in his view is adding momentum to his drive to give greater investment opportunities to Nigerians at home and the diaspora.
He reiterated that President Tinubu is the first Nigerian Politician that has deliberately prepared himself for authentic leadership because of his uncommon supports for the Nigerian people since assumption of office particularly in foreign policy interventions and domestic governance ecosystem in the last 100 days.
According to him, the significant gesture in boosting Nigeria-UAE cooperation economically and geopolitically is second to none in the political history of Nigeria.
He stated that an economically stronger Nigeria would certainly help augment both the scope and level of cooperation between Nigeria and the UAE. The trade volume between the two sides will increase beyond our imagination.
He, therefore, appealed to other political parties and strategic stakeholders in the Nigerian project to engage with the Tinubu led administration to chart a pathway to national building efforts for shared prosperity particularly from the several billions of U.S. dollars’ worth of foreign direct Investments and new trade portfolios into the Nigerian economy across different sectors which is a sweet smelling savour for a new national rebirth.
Ambassador Oluwafemi also hailed Aviation minister, Festus keyamo, SAN for being proactive over the UAE debacle.
He said: “Within such a short period the aviation minister has proven to Nigerians that his administrative capabilities are not in doubt.
“Definitely the UAE issue was acidic but Keyamo pulled it through barely three weeks in office as minister.
“His moves at the airports particularly in the major gateways of our country are laudable,”.
Victor, who’s also the President of the African Air Passengers Rigth Association (APRASS) and a UAE resident, thanks the UAE President for resolving the issues swiftly and the Minister of Aviation for being proactive on this issue and the airport relocation.
He commended him and advised the association should be involved in the ministry’s activities especially the current committee that was set up because the airline users are the major stakeholders in all activities concerning the airport and the airlines.
Kogi, China finalise bilateral relationship in transport infrastructure
*** The partnership promises to make the State an industrial hub
The Kogi State Government and the Chinese Construction giant, CCECC have entered in to an accord that will bolster business relationships in the areas of planning, financing and execution of transport infrastructure in the state.
The meeting took at the headquarters of the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation along Airport Road, Abuja on Thursday
The Executive Officer of the Kogi State Investment Promotion and Public Private Partnership Agency, Abdulkareem Siyaka who led the government’s delegation disclosed that the first line of business upscaling and partnership is the construction of Inland Transit Port in Lokoja to link Warri – Burutu/Port Harcourt via Onitsha.
This he said will rapidly develop the movement of agricultural produce and solid mineral cargo to and from northern and southern Nigeria.
He said the partnership was in line with the Kogi State’s medium-term economic development goals which within a 5-year time frame will want to rapidly develop her infrastructure outlay, citing transport infrastructure as the bedrock of economic development.
While interacting with newsmen at the end of their meeting, Abdulkareem said the upgrade of Adogo Airstrip to a commercial Cargo Airport to facilitate growth in cross-border trade and investment and boost real sector productivity was discussed.
Another infrastructure to be executed under the partnership is the construction of Electrified Rail Project between Jeba and Lokoj.
This will reduce haulage costs within Nigeria by freeing excess pressure on road transport infrastructure.
Speaking on the business models, Abdulkareem stated that Kogi State is in the process of building its economy from a conservative civil service state to an Industrial giant in northern Nigeria.
He said the ‘Build -Operate-Transfer’ model or similar model that will be economical for both parties would be ideal while involving the Federal Government to provide sovereign guarantees including counterpart funding in any or all the projects.
On his part, the Deputy Managing Director of CCECC, Guo Wenjun commended the state government for its vision while expressing readiness for the relationship.
He noted that the Kogi State Government has been a friendly business partner of CCECC over the years with mutual understanding and benefits.
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