The group accuses the government of ineptitude.
The Afenifere Renewal Group, ARG, on Thursday demanded that the present administration, headed by President Goodluck Jonathan, be restructured following the administration’s failure to sustain the nation’s economy.
In a statement signed by its publicity Secretary, Kunle Famoriyo, the ARG alleged that the Federal Government has been scampering for funds in light of the nation’s dwindling oil revenues.
The group, while blaming the current administrative structure for the nation’s financial woes, noted that the Federal Government has failed to meet its financial obligations including unpaid arrears and then expressed its concern for states that depend solely on the federal allocation.
Speaking on a recent article Clarifying Nigeria’s Debt Status written by the Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and circulated in the media, the group criticised her failure to reveal the current status of the nation’s domestic debt while disclosing its foreign debts.
“Few weeks ago, the Finance Minster wrote an article titled, “Clarifying Nigeria’s debt status,” in which she gleefully told us that the country’s foreign debt stands at $6.67 billion (N1 trillion) but she forgot to tell us the current status of our domestic debt which in August 2011, she told us was $42.23 billion (N6.8 trillion). We feared she intentionally left out this detail as the value may be shocking,” Mr. Famoriyo said.
Mr. Famoriyo also expressed his group’s lack of surprise at Ms. Okonjo-Iweala’s admission- while demanding for the passage of an amendment budget to avoid non-payment of worker’s salaries by October- that the multi-billion naira contract awarded to Niger Delta ex-militants to guard petroleum pipes has not paid off. The country now records worse cases of crude oil theft.
Fearing that these are all pointers that the nation’s economy at this time is unsustainable, Mr. Famoriyo demanded that the governing structure that has so far allowed profligacy and unmitigated corruption be pulled down now to make way for a Sovereign National Conference which, according to him, will bring about efficient and transparent management of the country’s resources.
“We dare say that the time is now because we would not stand by and watch Jonathan’s administration drag all of us into bankruptcy. Finance minister reportedly complained that NNPC has refused to be accountable to the nation, what more portrays ineptitude?” he asked.
He further called on patriotic Nigerians to join the group in demanding for a restructuring of the present administration so that citizens can live good, healthy and productive life, in a country where no man is oppressed.