A former vice president, Atiku Abubakar, on Sunday said in lieu of the current economic recession, the Federal Government should expunge every nonessential item in the 2021 budget proposal, estacodes, non-emergency travel, feeding, welfare packages, overseas training, new vehicle purchases, office upgrades and non-salary allowances.
"Until our economic prospects improve, Nigeria ought to exclusively focus on making budgetary proposals for essential items, which include reasonable wages and salaries, infrastructural projects, and social services (citizenry's health, and other human development investments)," he said.
Atiku, presidential candidate of the People's Democratic Party in the 2019 general elections, in a statement by his Media Office, said the current recession could have been avoided had present administration taken heed to patriotic counsel on cutting the cost of governance, saving for a rainy day and avoiding profligate borrowing.
"We must focus on solutions. Nigeria needs critical leadership to guide her back to the path of economic sustainability," Atiku said.
He said the proposed 2021 budget was no longer tenable as "Nigeria neither has the resources nor the need to implement such a luxury heavy budget.
"The nation is broke, but not broken. However, if we continue to spend lavishly, even when we do not earn commensurately, we would go from being a broke nation, to being a broken nation."
Similarly, the PDP in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, urged the present administration to allow competent, transparent and honest hands to effectively manage the nation's economy.