Chief Bisi Akande, a former Governor of Osun State, has urged the Federal Government to explore other sources of revenue, warning that the income from crude oil will further decrease, especially with the United States and other buyers converting to electric-powered vehicles.
Akande, who gave the warning in an address on Friday in Osogbo at a conference on the second anniversary of the South-West in national governance, stressed that Nigeria needed to look beyond oil.
He said the era of waiting for proceeds from crude oil from Abuja was gradually coming to an end.
Apart from shifting focus away from crude oil, Akande said Nigeria must cut waste, stressing that the nation could no longer afford to waste dwindling resources on unprofitable things.
Akande said, “We can see that all around the world and particularly in Nigeria, the present business climate is not particularly positive and profitable for crude oil economy.
“Little do the members of the general public of Nigeria yet appreciate that government can no longer play ‘Father Christmas’ and that the so-called free money from crude oil will no longer come in steadily if and when Europe, America and China totally convert to electric motors that consume no petroleum fuel.
“The future Nigerian constitution must not assume income from oil money and must drastically cut waste.”
Akande, who is a former Interim Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, said the occasional negative perceptions about the APC-controlled government were due to the silence of the party.
He advised the party to stimulate ‘deliberative democracy’ by frequently convening sessions where party members would be informed about various intended policies, plans and decisions of the party.
According to him, the sessions will make the APC members to be reasonably informed to enable them to inform members of the general public, especially now that Nigerians were reminding the party of its manifestos and looking forward to the party and the government to bring about true federalism.
One of the speakers at the conference, Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi, said the progress and prosperity of Nigeria would depend on states and the regions.
He said, “States must drive growth, create jobs and improve the livelihood of the people; it’s simple logic that the aggregate of state performances in the social and economic sectors adds up to national performance.
“To achieve this, we need to “federalise” census, surveys, GDP, education, agriculture, power generation and many of the responsibilities that are solely apportioned to the Federal Government and allow the states to have a wider field of play and localise citizen engagement and leadership accountability.”