The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has assured Nigerians that the federal government is taking fiscal and monetary measures to tackle the rising inflation rate in the country, considered to be the highest in 17 years.
Nigeria’s inflation rate has surged from the previous month’s 18.60 per cent to 19.64 percent in July 2022, according to the latest data by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). The data showed that the increase inflation rate was driven by increases in the food and core indexes.
The last time Nigeria’s inflation was above 19.64 percent was in September 2005 when it rose to 24.32 precent.
According to the NBS, the rise in food inflation was caused by increases in prices of bread and cereals, food products, potatoes, meat, fish, oil, and fat.
Breakdown of the report shows that the urban inflation rate rose by 2.08 percent to 20.09 percent in July 2022 from 18.01 percent recorded in July 2021, while the rural inflation rate hit 19.22 percent from 16.75 percent recorded in the corresponding period of 2021.
“On a month-on-month basis, the food inflation rate in July was 2.04%, this was a 0.01% insignificant decline compared to the rate recorded in June 2022 (2.05%).
“This decline is attributed to a reduction in the prices of some food items like Tubers, Maize, Garri, and Vegetables.
Answering reporters’ questions today, August 17 after the meeting of the Federal Executive Council (FEC), in the Presidential villa, Abuja, Lai Mohammed said: “I wish my colleague the Honourable Minister of Budget, Finance and National Planning, was here and she will probably tell you both the fiscal and monetary measures government is taking, especially in the area of the medium term fiscal measures.
“But what I can tell you is that inflation is a global issue. And I think it reflects, you know, a lot of things going on, globally. But what government does to stem inflation varies from government to government.
“Sometimes it is the way you adjust your interest rate or the way you introduce certain fiscal measures that would allow you to bring down the inflation. But like I said, I wish the Minister of Finance was here she will be in a better position to tell me exactly what measures we have been taking to ensure that inflation does not continue to soar.”
This was even as the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Umana Umana, said that government will soon constitute the board of the NDDC support the smooth working of the ministry.
Umana said that the board would have to wait until the forensic report about the audit of the commission is out.
“Government is at the stage of concluding on that and I can very conveniently say that the constitution of the board will follow immediately thereafter. Nobody is trying to stall the constitution of the board.
“I want the board in place because it will make my work run smoothly. But we must also follow the due process, conclude on this report and the white paper is issued. So that is the position.”
Umana said that FEC has approved additional costs of carrying out the forensic audit.
“You will recall that for this exercise a lead consultant was appointed who had to work with 16 other field auditors and the initial contract zone which covered the lead consultants and the field forensic auditors was N1.786 billion.
“These auditors have since concluded their work but in the cost of carrying out this work, it was discovered that they had to deal with many more projects than were initially envisaged and the exercise also took an additional seven months.
“The total number of additional projects considered by the auditors was 3,773. So for reasons of the additional number of projects and the additional time taken, Council today approved a revised additional sum of N765,974,975.50 to cover the additional works done by the forensic auditors.”
Umana took over the Niger Delta Affairs ministry from Senator Godswill Akpabio who resigned in June to run in the presidential primary of the ruling All Progresives Congress (APC).
Source: Persecond News.