By Adekunle Sulaimon
A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress in Osun State, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye, has said that the directive of President Bola Tinubu, on the stoppage of the implementation of the hike of electricity tariff is commendable.
Oyintiloye, while speaking with newsmen on Sunday in Osogbo, said that the directive was a true reflection that the president was sensitive to the plights of the masses.
It will be recalled that the minister of power, Adebayo Adelabu, had on November 8 revealed that President Tinubu recently stopped the implementation of a hike in electricity tariff and insisted that subsidy be paid on power consumed nationwide.
Oyintiloye, a member of the defunct APC Presidential Campaign Council, said that removing electricity subsidy while Nigerians were still battling with the effects of fuel subsidy removal would have been counter-productive.
He said the president’s decision on the electricity hike shows that he was in constant touch with the feelings and aspirations of Nigerians.
The APC chieftain said that in the quarterly report by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, the federal government’s subsidy in the power sector hit N135.2 billion in the second quarter of 2023, from the N36 billion it paid in the first quarter.
He said the NERC reports also revealed that the N135.2 billion recorded in the second quarter of 2023 was an increase of N99.21 billion or 275 per cent compared to the previous quarter of N36 billion.
Oyintiloye noted that the NERC report disclosed that the government is still subsidising electricity for the masses.
He said removing the electricity subsidy, which the government was still paying to fill the gap between the reflective tariff cost and allowed tariff cost, would have been another burden on the masses.
“We need to commend the president for not allowing the hike in electricity tariff at this moment to scale through.
“This really shows that the president meant well for Nigerians and all his economic policies are in line and tune with reality, which is in the best interest of the populace.
“Removing electricity subsidy at this time while Nigerians are still struggling with the effects of fuel subsidy removal will not have been the best.
“But because the president is a man who understands what people are presently going through in terms of exchange rate, galloping inflations among others.
“And the president is working so hard to make Nigerians smile again; that is more reason he did not allow the hike to scale through,” he said.
Oyintiloye also commended the president for allowing free and fair elections in Kogi, Imo, and Bayelsa states, adding that the results of the election show that the president is a man of integrity.
He said people were allowed to vote peacefully for the candidate of their choice without any form of intimidation or harassment.
“This really shows that a new Nigeria is possible under this present administration.
“All what we need to do is to keep on supporting the president and his team as they navigate the ship of the country to the promise land,” he said.
Oyintiloye, however, congratulated Gov. Hope Uzodimma of Imo for his re-election, his Bayelsa counter, Douye Diri, and the newly elected Kogi governor, Usman Ododo.
He said the elections of the three governors show that Nigerians still have a very strong belief in the neutrality of the APC government.
Oyintiloye, a former lawmaker, however, urged Nigerians to support the government in its “Renewed Hope Agenda,” adding the country will rise above its current challenges very soon.