Ministers, CBN, FIRS pledge to address high cost of living

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The Minister of Finance, Wale Edun and his counterpart in the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, Atiku Bagudu, have assured Nigerians that the high cost of living being witnessed by Nigerians is currently being addressed.

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Mr Olayemi Cardoso, and the Chairman, the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Mr Zacch Adedeji, joined the ministers to allay the fear of Nigerians about the current inflation.

They all spoke when they appeared at the sectoral debate organized by the House of Representatives for the finance sector and stakeholders on the current cost of living at the Plenary in Abuja on Tuesday.

While speaking, Edun, who is also the coordinating minister of the economy, said, “Where we are as a nation is a much better place than we were in on May 29, 2023.”

He added that Nigeria as a country was on the road to economic disaster by way of subsidy on fuel, adding that it was expected that there would be challenges as a result of subsidy removal.

“As things improve, there will be further intervention on behalf of the vulnerable to assist in the cost of living,” he said.

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Bagudu on his part reiterated President Tinubu’s commitment to national development, adding that the president reckoned with the challenges of the living conditions of the people.

“What is happening in our country is obvious to someone visiting a construction site; we are very clear that we are on the right path and the challenges of the moment are being tackled,” he added.

Also speaking, the apex bank boss, Cardoso said he is confident positive outcomes from the administration of Tinubu were already emerging.

He said, “The concern as per the cost of living is genuine, and the urgency of the matter is not lost on us at the CBN, and we are working tirelessly to bring up a lasting solution.”

In a related development, the FIRS chairman, Mr Adedeji, said the service was not a revenue-generating agency but a revenue-collection agency, adding that the agency was doing a lot to increase the nation’s revenue base.

According to him, the target for 2023 revenue was N10 trillion and it achieved N12.3 trillion because of the decision taken by the president.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Speaker of the sectoral debate with the Ministers of CBN and FIRS, Benjamin Kalu, said it was imperative to recognize the urgency and importance of the agenda before it.

He said, “We must also confront the stark realities of the economic, fiscal, and revenue challenges that our beloved nation, Nigeria, is currently facing.”

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