Hike in fuel price: Nigerians deserve apology not political comparisons

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Resort to attributing the current hardship in Nigeria to the years of the reign of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in government has been a rife  phenomenon by the current All Progressives Congress (APC)-led government. Perhaps, the administration must have forgotten too soon that it was voted in by Nigerians to change the narrative of the experiences they were not satisfied with under the previous government.

An apparent gaffe made by the Senior Special Assistant, Media and Publicity to President Muhammadu Buhari, Malam Garba Shehu, on Thursday irked Nigerians when he stated that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) sold a litre of petrol for N600 at a time during their regime.  Shehu who was trying to defend the recent increment in the Price of fuel as approved by the Federal Government, had taken to his twitter handle to state that: “Don’t allow the PDP to deceive you. Amidst acute shortages, they sold petrol at N600 per litre on Easter Sunday in 2013.” The Federal Government had through the Petroleum Products Marketing Company increased the ex-depot price of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol, from N138.62 to N151.56 per litre; a development that skyrocket the increment of pump price by petrol marketers from N148 to between N158 and N162 per litre.

The statement which has attracted   lampoons from Nigerians is clearly a wrong defense at a wrong time. Social media being awash with displeasures registered against the statement, should is not unexpected. The expectations and confidence Nigerians repose on the current President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration was on the high side from the onset of the regime. It is no doubt that the impetus which compelled Nigerians to vote for the APC government was the need for change, having felt unsatisfied with the performance of the PDP-led government. Acrimonious reactions should therefore be expected if the desired conditions they look up to is far from sight. The prevailing circumstances which apparently is worse than the experience during the past PDP- led administration is a call for grievances.

It is essential that rather than making fruitless referrals, the Government should look forward and muster all strength in a dexterous drive, towards addressing and cushioning the current distresses vitiating the Country’s economy across sectors. The imbalances shooting-off in the oil sector, particularly in the downstream subsector demands undivided attention. Against resorting to politically induced comparisons that are themselves awkward and unwarranted analytically, Nigerians deserve apologies for the worsening of living conditions, contrary to the hope and expectations they reposed in President Buhari to have voted in the current government.

Government in the advanced countries, have grown to live in the liberal cultural system where established authorities exist to admit to gaps and inefficiencies not expected by the people. In such terrain, the Government do not resort to excuses and pointing accusing fingers. Rather, such proactive governments assume responsibility for whatever the citizens are made to suffer. Until when government authorities in Nigeria begin to recognise this principle of taking responsibilities for deficiencies across human endeavors in the Country, it might be far from getting near the track of what a working-effective government is.

While Nigerians are still looking up to better days of relief from the hardship of decades, the current administration should turn to the fact of taking responsibilities for the prevailing plights and sufferings Nigerians are going through. All efforts should be mustered towards seeing to how the burdens of hardship are relieved from the people who have voted the present government into power. The mandate given to the present government was delivered by the people for the betterment of their living conditions. Any results not reflecting such interest is counterproductive. The Government should take note and drive through the forceful lane of actions to redress and ameliorate all defects imposing untoward experiences on Nigerians.