The former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to reduce the cost of governance to have enough funding for critical sectors like education and health.
Obi explained that Indonesia is investing $50 billion in education annually, and they are 250 million while Nigeria with a population of over 200 million is not even spending $2 billion on education.
He said that the cost of governance in Nigeria is unacceptable anywhere in the world, claiming that he was sure about that as former governor of Anambra.
The former governor disclosed this today, Monday, November 30, during his appearance on Arise TV programme.
He said: “The cost of governance in Nigeria is unacceptable anywhere in the world. I have operated it and I know that the cost is too much.
“People cannot put food on their table, whereas our leaders are still drinking champagne. These are the things we should be bothered about and reduced.”
Obi stressed that the cost must be reduced to make way for more funding in education, citing the Covid-19 pandemic which exposed Nigeria’s deficit in human development spending compared to other developing nations as populated as Nigeria.
According to him, “We need to reduce it to have money for critical areas of education.
“What happened with Covid-19 has shown us the consequences of several years of bad leadership and not investing in the education or health sector.
“You could see it, countries spending billions on education, while we are spending nothing.
“Indonesia is investing $50 billion in education annually, and they are 250 million. We are 200 million and not even spending $2 billion on education.
“Comparing both populations, we are supposed to spend at least $35 -$40 billion on education, meanwhile that is our entire National budget.”
Speaking about his experience as governor, he said cut costs of governance by buying government vehicles from local manufacturers, especially Innoson.
Obi added: “We need to make the economy productive, and it’s not rocket science.
“All we need to do is check nations where debt increased in private sector; South Africa is $490 billion in the private sector compared to less than half of that for the public sector, which shows an economy that is working. In Nigeria’s case, it’s the reverse and we need to support the engine of growth.”
“For infrastructure development, the private sector needs to be brought in to drive the process of gaining funding from capital markets for infrastructure construction and get the revenues through tolls. Nigerians are willing to drive around in good roads that are tolled.
“It must be private-sector led to make it more effective, FG’s role is to support. It’s not rocket science, it has been done before in Anambra.
“What we need is to have people who are competent and wealth creators. Let’s do what others are doing to get their economy productive, we have people making money without doing anything.”