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Nigerians suffered enough in 2021, Prelate tells Buhari

By Isaac Taiwo
29 December 2021   |   2:49 am
Prelate and Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, Nzie Nsi Eke, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to shelve any plan to hike the price of petroleum products.

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Prelate and Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, Nzie Nsi Eke, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to shelve any plan to hike the price of petroleum products.

According to the cleric, any upward review of the price will only worsen the living condition of Nigerians who are already impoverished by the prevailing harsh economy in the country.

The Prelate, who made the appeal in his Christmas and New Year message, regretted that the hopes and expectations most Nigerians had at the beginning of 2021 have been dashed.

He called for the immediate release of all political detainees and agitators for self-determination while advocating dialogue with the agitators as a panacea to rising tension in the country.

He said: “While we acknowledge efforts of our governments at all levels to valiantly steer the wheel of governance, despite prevailing challenges, we are constrained to admit that year 2021 has been a tough one for Nigerians.

“The hopes and fervour that ushered in the year, in the beginning, began to wane soon after as citizens were confronted with more strenuous situations than what was experienced in previous years.

“The issue of insecurity became more serious while the number of Nigerians sent to their early graves by terrorists or bandits increased significantly. The cost of living continued to increase astronomically such that many families could no longer afford to feed twice a day.

“The fact that Nigeria remains the poverty capital of the world is disturbing. Because of the perceived marginalisation, as alleged by many ethnic nationalities, the agitation for separation or, at least, restructuring of the Nigerian polity has become more stringent.

“In view of these, I am calling on our leaders, as we move into the new year, to rescind the alleged plan to increase fuel pump price. Nigerians cannot afford this extra burden. Reverse the cost of domestic gas, which has increased by as much as 300 per cent within the last year. Reduce social tension among the various ethnic groups by releasing all political detainees and exploring dialogue and political solutions to all agitations.

“Pave way for free and credible general election in 2023 by enacting enabling laws and making Independent National Electoral Commission truly independent. Resolutely address the seemingly intractable security challenges in various parts of the nation, especially in the North West and North East”.