PMB’s campaign promises of 3m jobs annually, steady power supply and others
NEWS DIGEST–Not more than 84 days to the 2019 general election, two major promises made by the President Muhammadu Buhari- led administration during the 2015 general elections have not been achieved, this newspaper can report.
These unachieved promises have been rated by Buharimeter, an independent monitoring tool that enables Nigerians, scholars and political analysts around the globe to evaluate the implementation of the campaign promises of President Muhammad Buhari and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), made in the prelude to the 2015 general elections.
According to a recent report provided on the platform, out of 222 promises made by President Buhari and the APC in 2019, 7 have been achieved, 149 are still ongoing, 95 are not rated while 6 promises have not been achieved.
In May, The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), in a yearly poll conducted amongst 4,000 respondents across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, stated that the President was rated low.
It was revealed that 40 per cent of Nigerians approve of the president’s performance while 44 percent disapprove with the remaining 16 per cent neither approving nor disapproving his performance.
3 million jobs annually
In 2015, through the APC Manifesto (An Honest Contract with Nigeria), Mr. Buhari promised the creation of 3 million new jobs a year through industrialization, public work and agricultural expansion which should produce a total of 12 million after the completion of the four years.
Meanwhile, a fact-check published by PREMIUM TIMES in March revealed that just 3,020,039 jobs have been created between 2015 and March 2018. This figure cuts across extrapolation, statistics provided in the quarterly reports of the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and those employed through the N- power scheme, a two-year contract. (https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/261894-how-accurate-is-labour-ministers-claim-on-buhari-administrations-job-creation-figures.html)
Also, the NBS stated that the unemployment rate in the last quarter of 2016 rose from 13.9% to 14.2% while in the last quarter of 2017, the 14.2% skyrocketed to 18.8%. It also said that Nigeria’s labour population increased from 83.9 million in the second quarter to 85.1 million in the third quarter of 2017, a difference of 1.2million in additional workforce.
However, Nigerians on social media space have also called the attention of Mr. Buhari to this promise as he will be seeking re-election in 2019. He launched his campaign promises on Monday in his re-election bid manual tagged ‘next level’.
Baba Rahman @bashcare4u
“2015 Buhari: We will create 3 million jobs yearly
after 3 years in power, over 10 million jobs lost under Buhari
Buhari must think all Nigerians are as dumb as the dead brains who support him.
#NextLevel Next level to Daura”
“Buhari took over power in 2015, 3.5 years down the line, we lost 11 million jobs, because of election, his Zombies are screaming NEXT LEVEL everywhere online. In case you don’t know, that is 22 million job loss awaiting you. Be WISE.” Prince Adelaja @AdelajaAdeoye posted
Francis Nwaeze @ nwazetop “Someone promised Nigerian’s 3 million jobs last time but ended up taking more than 10 million jobs away from them, he is back this time with next level and a promise of 15 million job. Eyes open.”
*Steady power supply*
The Buharimeter also stated that in the Nigerian political parties discussion series in 2015, President Buhari promised to guarantee a steady supply of power within the next 12-18 months; and that there would be a notable change within 6 months.
Meanwhile, the Executive Director of Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors, Sunday Oduntan, in a stakeholders’ forum organised by Ogun State House of Assembly on the activities Electricity Distribution Companies in June, said that Nigeria must generate at least 180,000 megawatts of electricity to have adequate and stable power supply.
As provided in the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) 2018 fact sheets, Nigeria has encountered limitations in the power sector.
“Nigeria is endowed with large oil, gas, hydro and solar resource, and it already has the potential to generate 12,522 megawatts (MW) of electric power from existing plants, but most days is only able to generate around 4,000 MW, which is insufficient. Nigeria has privatized its distribution companies, so there is a wide range of tariffs.”
However, in November 2018, a recent data from the country’s Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing showed that total electricity generation has been hovering below 4,000mw in recent months, although the Minister, Babatunde Fashola, termed it an improvement.
“We were distributing averagely 2,690 megawatts of electricity to Nigerians, but today, that story has changed, distribution has risen to 5,222 megawatts, an all time national high,” He said in 4th Edition Retreat for top directors, heads of units and chief executives of agencies and parastatals.
Also, several news reports have shown the abysmal state of power supply in Nigeria and how poor electricity supply, inadequate facilities affect storage of vaccines, immunisation in Abuja, Nigerian capital, and many other cities.
*Any hope in the #Next level campaign promises?*
Despite the failure of the Buhari-led administration to fulfill the 2015 promises on 3 million jobs annually and steady power supply, the President has made new promises on job creation and power supply in his re-election campaign manual launched on Monday.
He promised to create 8.5 million new jobs and empower 11.2 million Nigerians in all sectors altogether.
“Next Level is to engage 1,000,000 N-Power graduates Skill up 10 million Nigerians under a voucher system in partnership with private sector.
“Anchor Borrowers Scheme to support input and jobs to 1 million farmers. Livestock Transformation Plan to create 1.5 million jobs along dairy, beef, hide & Skin, blood meal, crops. Agriculture Mechanization Policy with Tractors and Processors to create 5 million jobs.”
“Provide USD500m innovation fund to tech and creative sector to create 500,000 jobs .Train 200,000 youth for outsourcing market in technology,
services and entertainment.”
In the power sector, unlike in 2015 when he gave an assurance of steady power supply, President Buhari promised a minimum of 1,000 MW New Generation
incremental power capacity per annum on
the Grid and to increase power distribution to get to 7,000 MW under Distribu-
tion Expansion programme.
“9 Universities will have uninterrupted power next when we complete the First Phase of 37 Off-Grid Power.” He added in the manual.
However, in a telephone interview with this reporter, a political analyst and a development consultant, Jide Ojo, derided the Nigerian politicians and how they ‘promise in prose and deliver in poetry’.
He stated that government of the day just like the previous ones have not been able to deliver their promises hundred percent.
“They come around to tell us what we want to hear and not what they will do. It’s high time the citizens voted candidates who will deliver rather than those who have come to woo them with vague promises like they’ve been doing in previous years.”
Speaking on the rate of unemployment in the country, Mr. Ojo explained that Nigeria’s unemployment rate has increased over the years and that businesses more than before, now face myraids of challenges.
“The government has failed in terms of creating jobs and even Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are faced with what we call multiple taxation. The local government authorities will collect tax, the state government and the federal government will also demand charges.”
“The trader moni schemy that this administration recently started should have been done before now. Why is it coming few days to the election?”
Commenting on the promise of steady power supply, he said, although the government of the day had stated that it is trying its best to ensure that, the country is far behind in comparison to what countries like South Africa, China and others are generating.
Also, he explained the economic, social and health benefits of steady power supply as it affects the country.
“We can not fix unemployment without fixing the epileptic power supply in the country because it affects businesses, industries and even the human health. For instance, a lot of lives are being lost every year owing to the adverse effects of fumes from generating plants.”
He noted that the cost of production in Nigeria is on the high side in a way that it pays to be a seller than a manufacturer because of the dominance of foreign manufacturers who can afford to dump their products in Nigeria because of low cost of production enjoyed in their countries.
“The poor power supply has exponentially increased the consumption of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS). People have had reasons to buy PMS and diesel fuel to power their generators when there’s no good electricity. So, if we can get it right in the power sector, it will reduce the dependence on oil and gas,” Mr. Ojo added
He then advised the electorate to make wise decisions in 2019.
“We have over 40 political parties and I have only seen the programmes of two political parties. Let us check the programmes of other candidates and evaluate their plans for the country.”