In the latest report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), inflation rose from 15.6 per cent in May 2016 to 16.5 per cent in June 2016, its highest point since October 2005. According to the report, energy and food prices weighed heavily on the inflation level, and the biggest impact is on the average citizens, who have no corresponding increase in their incomes. Although there are various suggestions on greater dependence on local products, improved agriculture, more jobs, and better security, among others, to you, how best can inflation be reduced to a single digit level in Nigeria?
* Nigeria is strange; at a time everyone from government to individuals are complaining of a lack of liquidity, inflation is rising. I’m no economist, but the normal thing done is to reduce spending and encourage saving. This is counter-productive to an economy that needs investment as well as massive infrastructural development. As government, we must spend our way out of this recession to get us back into growth. We are currently feeling the effects of a year of doing nothing in terms of capital projects or continuing with ongoing projects, oil production reduction and little or no foreign or local investment. Until these change, we would still be in the woods for quite some time.
– Mr. Buga Dunj, Jos, Plateau State
* We must disown our humiliating ego promptly. Smuggling must be blocked; government should remove N1,000 from circulation now; they should strengthen the financial institutions, use Nigerian labour, and ensure the people consume Made in Nigeria goods. There should be improved storage facilities and processing facilities for our products’ adequate preservation and use. At 16.5 per cent inflation, we must overhaul our policies now and now.
– Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos
* Why wouldn’t there be inflation? I don’t think that the Bureau of Statistics did a thorough job otherwise the percentage increase would have been higher. Nevertheless, I was already a wage-earner in 1984/1985, it was the same scenario. People like us knew that Buhari’s second coming will hit us this hard.
– Sir Idika Okorie Amaeke Abam, Abia State
* The truth of the matter is that inflation is not only hampering development in Nigeria; it is also a global issue. But the past government failed to save for the rainy day like this; rather they looted the treasury. Even Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala former minister (of Finance and the Coordinating Minister of the Economy) raised the alarm that Nigeria will witness hard time, which we are now passing through because we failed to diversify the economy when they discovered that oil price is going down every day. Nigerians should not blame much on this present government over the economic crisis. There is hope for Nigerians; we just need prayers to overcome the present difficulties.
– Mr. Gordon Chika Nnorom, Public Commentator, Umukabia, Abia State
* The urgent introduction of Marketing Boards can curb inflation of prices of commodities, check warehouses where foodstuffs are stored and sold at exorbitant prices to the public; if they are given full legal laws and backing.
– Mr. Dogo Stephen, Kaduna
* Inflation, too much money chasing too few goods and hiked services is grossly dangerous for our ailing economy. Our financial policies must change proactively. Middlemen and the chain of goods distribution must be checked now. The current inflation rate at 16.5 per cent calls for policy review to avoid disaster.
– Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos State
* It is time to bring in marketing boards and apply the price system. The stock market needs re-organisation. Our financial house must be invigorated urgently. Food production must be stepped up urgently.
– Ms. Saiki Ometere Tina, Gboko, Benue State
* Yes, who is to blame for inflation, when the past government looted the treasury? Instead of diversifying the economy into agricultural and other sectors, they depended on oil, which is affecting the economy because of oil price fall. I believe everything will be okay as President Muhammadu Buhari is on the right track to find solution to inflation through agriculture, mining and other sectors. Inflation will not kill Nigerians, but solution will come.
– Mrs. Ijeoma Nnorom, Lagos State
* If I understand inflation correctly, it means too much money chasing too few goods. Therefore, the currency in circulation should be mopped up. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has to be up and doing; also our manufacturing muscle as a nation has got to be strengthened. No more lip service, I implore!
– Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R. Associates, Apo, Abuja
* Inflation in Nigeria goes beyond too much liquidity for too few goods and services; there is also a lot of profiteering going on in the manufacturing and food production chains and the final prices getting to the consumers is way beyond the cost of production or labour and reasonable profit. Thus, the prices of goods, foodstuffs and other commodities must be controlled strictly and marketing boards will go a long way to ensure sanity in the price regime of products, otherwise the whole of Nigeria will become deregulated. Anyone caught flouting laid-down prices should be punished as scape-goats to deter others; while production must be increased especially in agricultural products to allow supply overrun demand and force down prices of goods and services. Government must sit up now beyond paying lip service to a better day and vain reassurances.
– Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State
Top tip: Intensify economic diversification
Second: Revive moribund marketing boards
Third: Patronise locally-made goods more
Radical tip: Withdraw all N1,000 notes!
Total no of respondents: 10
Highest location: Lagos (4)
Next Week: Is There Any Way Out of the Current Mess?
Nigeria is arguably facing one of the bleakest periods in her history since independence in 1960, with inflation rising alongside destructive acts of Niger Delta militants, pockets of insurgency in the North-east, upheavals in the National Assembly, allegations of coup plot; cash crunch at all government levels, spate of kidnapping, higher costs of living and mutual mistrust between the executive and the legislature, which have all greatly hampered the pace of development in the country? In your own view, what is the best way out of this current mess?
Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (July 28 & Monday, August 1) to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, AND firstname.lastname@example.org. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, August 4