S'East, S'South professionals to Buhari, others: Stop flying first class drinking champagne, declare 3-year emergency on economy

By The Citizen

The South-East, South-South Professionals of Nigeria (SESSPN)‎ has called on the Federal Government to declare a three-year emergency on the economy in order to help it bounce back.

The group led by its President‎, Emeka Ugwu-Oju, said in the face of the economic realities currently facing the country, this was not the time to be partisan but for all hands to be on deck with each geo-political zone bringing something to the table to help the country out of its present woes.

The group was in the Presidential Villa to meet with Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.

Speaking to State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Ugwu-Oju said it makes economic sense for those in both government and private sector to, for instance, start traveling on the economy class‎, adding that the era when only the poor are expected to make sacricies while those who say the economy is bad but keeps traveling first class and drinking champagn should be over.

Ugwu-Oju who said they were in the Villa to formally invite the Vice President to the second South-South, South-East Forum on April 28-29thand also talk about the state of the economy, said the dwindling oil price calls for urgent measures to be taken.

He said, 'We talked on the state of the economy, even though we maybe perceived as a geo-political group we do have a pan-Nigerian outlook. We try to interface with south-west professionals and others from other geo-political zones on how we can get the Nigerian economy out of the woods.

'We believe that ‎each zone has something to bring to the table, we don't have to wait for the federal government to do things for us. We the professionals want to see what we can bring to the table, we from the south-south south east are bringing the energy corridor project to the table and we can say we have the most comparative advantage on that.

'On the current state of the economy, we strongly suggested our advise that Mr. President as a matter of urgency in consultation with the National Assembly, declare a three-year state of emergency on the economy. ‎And this is not about APC and PDP, is something that is non-partisan, our economy is bad, people should realise that because we are making it seem like is something that will go away. We were having $100 a barrel and now we might not have $50 a barrel in the next three years and we have to factor it in.

'This issue of fuel scarcity is a typical example of what has happened, we didn't plan for it before, we now have to get every citizen not a question of Mr. Bad or Mr. Good, the total leadership has to realise that all Nigerians have to come together, we have to roll up our sleeves so that everyone has a role to play. We have to sacrifice, is not just the poor that should be sacrificing alone. For example, I see no reason why any minister, a state governor or whoever should be traveling outside economy class, we have to show that things are bad. You can't tell me things are bad and I see you drinking champagn, flying first class or private jet, same goes for the private sector.

'These were the things we tried to make the Vice President know and then communicate. We had a good engagement and as you know he is very intelligent, very hardworking, very cerebral and we are happy he is the vice President of the country'. – Metrowatch.