A chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC), General Garus Gololo (rtd), has raised concerns about the proposed monthly palliative of N8,000 to 12 million households to mitigate the impact of subsidy removal. Gololo, a former member of the APC Board of Trustees, warned the administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu to avoid repeating the mistakes of its predecessor in terms of palliative distribution.
While acknowledging the importance of palliatives to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal, Gololo urged caution, citing previous controversies surrounding the diversion of funds meant for palliatives. He referred to cases such as the diverted coronavirus palliative funds and the unfulfilled promise of N5,000 to elderly citizens during the last administration. He also questioned the effectiveness of the school feeding program.
Instead of distributing the money to unsubstantiated beneficiaries, the former APC board member proposed using the funds for job creation by refurbishing Nigerian refineries or establishing new industries to employ youths and school leavers. Gololo suggested that the money could be allocated to initiatives like inter-city or metro rail lines to improve transportation for workers and the general public. He cited a previous mass transportation system in the FCT during Mallam El-Rufai’s administration that suffered from mismanagement after he left office.
Gololo expressed skepticism about the impact of an N8,000 monthly palliative, emphasizing that it would not effectively alleviate poverty, especially without a reliable means of determining beneficiaries. He suggested increasing the amount and ensuring that at least 100,000 minimum wage workers receive steady payments over a period of four years to make a positive difference in people’s lives.
Regarding the Peace Accord initiated by General Abdulsalami Abubakar, Gololo criticized its loss of value and perceived obsolescence.