Fuel Hike: Palliatives. Prospects and Problems.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo says the Federal Government will directly impact the lives of more than 8 million Nigerians in different social investment as contained in the 2016 budget spending.
Other palliatives which would help to cushion the effects of the fuel hike include direct payment of N5000 monthly to one million extremely poor Nigerians for 12 months as provided for in the 2016 budget for which N68.7b has been appropriated.
Direct provision of very soft loan for market women, men and traders, artisans and Agric workers to a total of 1.76m Nigerians, without the conventional collateral.
The above prospects appears very good on paper. However the major problem would be, (1) who is an extremely poor Nigerian? What indices will the federal government use to measure the extremely poor Nigerian? When? How long? Nigeria has no database of poor people. This would constitute a serious problem on its own. (2) Who are market women, men, traders, artisans and Agric workers? There is no register of these trades wo/men. There is no easy way out of this. A good way might be to increase the minimum wage, but that again is for workers only.