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Nigeria Must Cut Its Coat According To Its Cloth – Osinbajo

Yemi Osinbajo

Yemi Osinbajo

The Vice-President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo has come out to say that Nigeria needs to call for a national debate to look into the various issues around the size and cost of its costly and unsustainable governance.

He recently revealed that reducing the cost of governance is something that needs to be done but it might be hard for the government to do it by itself.

According to him, we must begin to cut out coat according to our cloth by turning legislators to part-time lawmakers, having a unicameral legislature instead of bicameral, and ensuring the local governments are run by employees of the Ministry of Local Government Affairs.

He added that he is not trying to be disrespectful but Nigeria has to start cutting its coat according to its cloth.

His words, “The greater Atlanta (in the United States) has a Gross Domestic Product that is higher than that of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and Atlanta is not the richest city in the United States.”

“I don’t want to be disrespectful, but the annual sales of Tesla exceed the budget size of our country, so should we not begin to cut our coat according to our cloth; should we not begin to look at all these costs and the constitution itself; maybe turn the legislators to part-time lawmakers, have a unicameral legislature instead of bicameral, have the local governments run by employees of the Ministry of Local Government Affairs? We just need to think out of the box to reduce structural cost and make government sustainable over the long term.”

“There is no question that we are dealing with large and expensive government, but as you know, given the current constitutional structure, those who would have to vote to reduce (the size of) government, especially to become part-time legislators, are the very legislators themselves. So, you can imagine that we may not get very much traction if they are asked to vote themselves, as it were, out of their current relatively decent circumstances.”

“So, I think there is a need for a national debate on this question and there is a need for us to ensure that we are not wasting the kind of resources that we ought to use for development on overheads. At the moment, our overheads are almost 70 per cent of revenues, so there is no question at all that we must reduce the size of government.”


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