• Features
  • Updated: May 30, 2023

Tinubu's One Million Jobs Promise: Feasible Or Unattainable?

Tinubu's One Million Jobs Promise: Feasible Or Unattainable?

Tinubu's Handover Ceremony

Yesterday, Nigeria's latest President, Bola Tinubu, in Abuja, took the oaths of office and allegiance as the 16th President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

In his inaugural speech at Eagle Square, Tinubu unveiled a series of steps he would take to position the country on the path of economic development, stability and prosperity.

And shortly after his inauguration, the President met with envoys from the United Kingdom, United States, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Brazil, South Korea, Israel, Cape Verde, Somalia and Nicaragua at the Presidential Villa, Abuja

However, of the key takeaways from the President's inaugural speech is the promise of one million jobs.

While this is a welcome strategic focus of the new regime, it needs to be flagged that over-promising at this early stage is what this regime should avoid at all costs knowing all the wonderful promises of the last regime that ended up as mirages. 

An Overview of Buhari's Fleet of Unfulfilled Promises and Bungled Dreams

Before taking office in 2015, Muhammadu Buhari and his party, the All Progressive Congress (APC), without any form of decorum strongly ridiculed past governments for their inability to solve Nigeria’s perennial petroleum sector problems.

Back then, Buhari vehemently called for a reduction in the prices of petroleum products amidst efforts by the then Goodluck Jonathan's government to deregulate prices and end subsidy payments.

Amongst other things, he said there was no such thing as “subsidy” and dismissed it as a scam used by government officials and their cronies to steal public funds.

By the time oil prices crashed in 2015, Buhari, being the then de facto opposition leader urged the government to “stop stealing from Nigerians and allow them to enjoy the relief that has come to consumers of petroleum products globally.”

Moreover, in his response to the fuel scarcity in the country in March 2015, Buhari again lambasted past governments and Goodluck Jonathan for failing to fix refineries and leaving Nigerians at the mercy of fuel imports.

This was when he reminded Nigerians that two of the four refineries in the country were built under his watch as petroleum minister in the 1970s.

Buhari said: “The countless man-hours that will be spent at petrol stations today, will reduce our productivity as a nation. This should not be should not be.

“In my time as NNPC chairman and Petroleum Minister in the late 70s, two of our four refineries were built, and domestic consumption catered for.

"But over the last several years our refineries have declined, and we are at the mercy of imports”, he added.

So the primary question now is: Given that the same party is still in charge, why should Nigerians think better of President Tinubu's early wonderful promises?

In view of these scenarios, President Tinubu, if he can be bold, conscientious, principled, and daring enough to be different, will do well to avoid treading the traditional paths of dishonest promises.


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