Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), a civil rights advocacy group, yesterday urged the federal government to eliminate multiple taxes and the 10% excise duty imposed on carbonated beverages, which is forcing factories and manufacturing companies to close and relocate to nearby nations with favorable business climates like Ghana and the Benin Republic.
In a statement, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, the National Coordinator of HURIWA, claimed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s National Economic Council (NEC), which is chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, has done little to help the economy of Nigeria.
The group claimed that even though Buhari promised to lift millions of people out of poverty during his campaign for office in 2015, he has actually done the exact opposite of what he said, as his government’s economic policies have driven even more Nigerians into poverty, with an unemployment rate of 33.3%, or about 23 million able-bodied, active adults without jobs.
Members of the National Union of Food Beverage and Tobacco Employees (NUFBTE) recently lamented that more than 5,000 employees in the sector had been laid off within eight months of 2022, reflecting the growing job loss caused by multiple taxes and other crippling business conditions by the Federal Government.
HURIWA’s Onwubiko commented that it is very bad that all economic development indexes are in red and the levels of unemployment, poverty, and hunger have exploded out of control. It is so evident that there is a mismatch between the economic team of President Buhari if they are still in place.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the price of food and other necessities has risen by more than 100% in some circumstances, with the inflation rate reaching a record 17-year high of 20.77% in September 2022.
He continued by saying that the Federal Government must take action to prevent the complete collapse of Nigeria’s economy because, if it does, constitutional rule and democracy will unavoidably follow. In order to maintain businesses in Nigeria, the government must, among other things, remove onerous taxes and levies and regain the trust of manufacturers. Check the system for financial leaks and significant thefts of crude oil resources that are being helped by the government and contributing to the general state of economic immobility.