No Job Losses From Government Reforms—Minister

Samuel Okocha, Abuja

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Nigeria’s Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has said the implementation of the Oronsaye Report, which seeks to rationalise government agencies and parastatals, will not lead to job losses or affect essential services.

“The whole idea is that the government wants to reduce costs and also improve efficiency in service delivery, Idris said at a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday. 

“It does not mean that the government is out to retrench workers or throw people into the labour market. 

Idris said the report, which has been on the shelf for about 11 years, clearly demonstrates President Tinubu’s commitment to fiscal prudence and responsible governance.

He said the president approved the implementation of the report after a careful review, to eliminate duplication of functions, streamline administrative processes, and optimise resource allocation.

“Through the implementation of Oronsaye ‘s Report, President Tinubu aims to achieve significant cost savings while maintaining the quality and delivery of services to the Nigerian people, Idris said.

The minister said Nigerians are beginning to see the benefits of the reforms being spearheaded by the president in various sectors, citing data from the National Bureau of Statistics. He noted Nigeria’s GDP grew by 3.46% in the fourth quarter of 2023, compared with 2.54% in the previous quarter. He also said capital importation rose by 66% in the same period, reversing a 36% decline in the third quarter.

Idris said petrol importation had been reduced by 50% since the withdrawal of the fuel subsidy, while the Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index crossed the 100,000 mark, its highest ever. He attributed the achievements to the pragmatic reforms initiated by the president, which inspired investor confidence in the Nigerian economy.

The minister said the president has also directed the design of a Social Security Unemployment Programme to cater for the unemployed graduates, as well as the setting up of a Social Consumer Credit Scheme to boost the purchasing power of Nigerians.

He said the president has also approved the resumption of direct payments of 25,000 naira to 15 million households, after a review of the National Social Investment Programme.