Nigerian businessman, Tony Elumelu, has lamented the impact of poor power supply and fuel scarcity on the citizens and businesses, urging Nigerians to hold their leaders accountable.
In a rare public commentary on Twitter Thursday, Mr Elumelu, who heads UBA, Transcorp and Heir Holdings, wondered how the nation would be so rich with resources yet unable to deliver service to its long-suffering people.
The prevailing hardship, Mr Elumelu said, should provoke Nigerians to elect better leaders in 2023.
“Elections are coming, security and resources need to be everyone’s agenda. Let’s be vocal for our nation’s priority,” he wrote.
“Evil prevails when good people are silent. We need to be vocal about 2023. Let’s focus on Nigeria. Demand and advocate for leaders that deliver.
“In 2023, Nigeria must be on a strong trajectory for progress and development,” he said.
Nigeria has faced fuel shortages since February after importing substandard fuel, resulting in weeks of severe scarcity and long queues at filling stations. The shortage has seen transport costs rise, thereby affecting goods and commodities.
Also, many parts of the country have been eithout electricity for days after the national grid collapsed. Businesses have closed as the cost of diesel skyrockets.
Mr Elumelu also criticised the government’s inability to tame oil theft that has seen production fall.
“This morning, I am listening to my colleagues at the office bemoan the very pressing issues that they face every day in this country, and how things have been getting worse and worse with no electricity for 5 days, hikes in the price of diesel, frightening food inflation, etc,” he wrote.
“How can a country so rich in natural resources have 90 per cent of its citizens living in hardship and poverty? I have often said that access to electricity is critical for our development, alleviation of poverty and hardship. And speaking of security, our people are afraid.
“Businesses are suffering. How can we be losing over 95 per cent of oil production to thieves?
“Look at the Bonny Terminal that should be receiving over 200k barrels of crude oil daily, instead, it receives less than 3,000 barrels, leading the operator at Shell to declare force majeure.
“Why are we paying taxes if our security agencies can’t stop this? It is clear that the reason Nigeria is unable to meet its OPEC production quota is not because of low investment but because of theft, pure and simple.
“Oil-producing countries are smiling as their foreign reserves are at risk. What is Nigeria’s problem? We need to hold our leaders more accountable.”