Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was in Lagos over the weekend. He attended a town hall meeting organized by the United Action for Change (UAC).
Suring the meeting he made several interesting declarations.
For example, In order to curb corruption and embezzlement of public funds, the Nigerian government has said that henceforth politicians and other public office holders would be required to justify their wealth.
Professor Osinbajo promised that he and President Muhammadu Buhari would lead by example by presenting details of their bank accounts and assets owned at the end of their tenure to convince Nigerians they did not abuse their positions to acquire illegal wealth.
“The era of people becoming emergency billionaires is gone,” Mr Osinbajo, a professor of Law told the audience at the Ikeja Airport Hotel, venue of the meeting.
“Anybody who can’t explain his wealth must be brought to account. Everyone who has served in public office must account for what they own. This is the change we want Nigerians to support,” he said.
He said the dream of the Buhari administration was to create a “country where integrity is our national culture.”
Osinbajo urged Nigerians to be more patient with the administration, saying the change mantra of the All Progressives Party-led government would not be reduced to mere slogan.
He added that government would do everything within its power to deliver the change it promised Nigerians.
“Nigerians should never lose hope in the face of present difficulties,” the vice president said. “We have the best opportunity to change this nation now because we have a leader who is honest in all his dealings. There is a determination by this government to change the nation’s direction.”
With the growing inflation and job loses many Nigerians are already question the ability of the government to salvage the economy.
But answering questions on the government’s social security scheme, the vice president said the government remained committed to providing health insurance scheme covering all Nigerians.
He promised that the N5,000 monthly stipend promised poor Nigerians would soon take off, saying the government was already compiling a list of one million initial beneficiaries across the country.
He pleaded for the understanding of Nigerians on the biting fuel scarcity across the country.
He promised that the government was working on a final solution, which would be made public in the weeks to come.
“How to deal finally with fuel scarcity is now what we are dealing with, to make the scarcity a thing of the past,” he said.
“Having only public refineries is also a problem. Private refineries run better. We’re asking for private investment in co-located refineries.”
The current petrol scarcity has continued for weeks and has persisted despite repeated promises by the government to supply enough fuel to end the long queues at the filling stations.