23rd February, 2024




A faith-based non-governmental organization (NGO) has called on state governors in the country to make proper use of the extra funds shared from subsidy withdrawal to alleviate the suffering of people in their states. The group said state governors should ease the pressure on Abuja.


It also reminded citizens to stop concentrating on the Federal Government when in actual fact the governors collect monthly allocations on their behalf. However, the group lauded the efforts of Borno and Lagos state governors.


The human rights group, which spoke under the aegis of the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), made its case in a statement titled, ‘Hardship: Governors must wake up’. The statement which was distributed to the media on Friday, 23rd February, 2024, was signed by the group’s Executive Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.


The full statement reads:


“We note with pleasure the concern shown by the Federal Government (FG) and the various efforts it is putting in place to alleviate the sufferings of the jamaahiir (masses). This is the hallmark of a responsible and sensitive administration. The various steps taken by FG in the last seven days have proved that this administration has genuine interest in the welfare of Nigerians.


“Among the steps taken by the FG are aggressive agricultural initiatives involving thousands of hectares of land, voting of humongous amounts of money to the agriculture sector, releasing thousands of metric tons in grains and supplying 2,000 tractors to farmers to promote mechanical agriculture around the country and ensure food security. No past government has ever come this far.


“It is also an open secret that FG in recent times tripled allocations given to state governments. This is in order to enable them to take care of citizens in the state and to cushion the effect of subsidy removal on them (


“Apart from their monthly allocations which was tripled, all the 36 governors were also given N30 billion each for the same purpose ( Just yesterday, FG moved to fix prices of rice, yam, gari and other items (


“It therefore behoves the governors to provide additional palliatives as well as lasting succour for the current hardship being experienced by Nigerians. It is imperative that state governors demonstrate equal concern for the plight of the people the same way that FG is taking the matter with all seriousness.


“We can single out two or three governors who have shown this concern and who have been dishing out support to their people. Topmost among them is the governor of Borno, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum. He is closely followed by the Lagos State governor.


“The Borno governor has been thinking outside the box. He distributes cash, vehicles (including solar-driven cabs to drivers as taxi), machineries, foodstuff including thousands of bags of rice, etc. Maiduguri is one place in Nigeria where the cost of transport is cheapest today.


“Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has set up special markets where goods are sold at low prices. He has also reduced the number of workdays for civil servants to three per week ( This will bring great relief to workers.


“Sanwo-Olu also spiced his relief package with free delivery for pregnant women in government hospitals and rebate in some drugs (


“Sanwo-Olu capped the edifice with the announcement of 25% slash in transport fare ( Lagos and Ogun have also started joint patrol of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to reduce the fear of insecurity (


“The governor of Kano has also put smiles on the lips of Muslims in the state who have been nursing fears concerning how to cope in the coming Ramadan season with prices sky-rocketing daily. Their fear is real because these are people who have been on artificial ‘fasting’ months before Ramadan due to the present economic doldrum. But the state governor has assured them of government’s support by instituting a Ramadan Feeding Committee ( Nigerians. urates-ramadan-feeding-committee/).


“These and other measures being put in place across the country will suppress citizens’ fears and mitigate their sufferings. These are exactly what all state governors, senators, representatives and local government chairmen should engage in.


“The line of demarcation between the role of the president, the governor, the senator, reps and local government chairmen on issues of providing relief for the electorate is thinner than the threads of a cobweb particularly where there is an enlightened electorate.


“We therefore call on all the 36 state governors, the senators, reps and local government chairmen particularly those who are yet to showcase efforts being made in their states on the issue of relief packages in these trying times to wake up and perform. People are hungry. The sick cannot afford drugs. Parents are in excruciating pain as they watch their children gnawing at near-empty plates.  


“We urge state governors to make proper use of the extra funds shared from subsidy withdrawal to alleviate the suffering of people in their states. There is too much pressure on Abuja. State governors should ease the pressure on the presidency.


“That is how it should be because money realized from subsidy withdrawal is being shared between Abuja and the states. It is articulated irresponsibility for any state governor to stand akimbo after collecting monthly allocation plus an extra N30 billion while Abuja suffocates under tension. Who does that?


“Politics apart, state governments must be on the same page with FG particularly on this issue of ameliorating the sufferings of Nigerians during these hard times. Governors must avoid playing politics with the lives of Nigerians. Hunger will not check party cards in your pocket. It is your purchasing power that matters. This is why every governor must cooperate with FG in its efforts to rubber-cushion the present hardship.


“State governors should emulate the good initiatives of others. It is when states copy the good things in other states that good governance will spread. Our citizens will notice the change. They will see their leaders’ goodwill. The restiveness in the land will subside. Even activists will shun calls for protest and professional troublemakers will become isolated.



“To Nigerians in their respective states we have this message: You must be conscious of your Allah-given fundamental human rights. Your governors, senators, representatives and local government chairmen are your servants. They are there to serve you. They are in office by your mandate.


“Stop focusing on Abuja alone. Ask your governor questions about the monthly allocations collected on your behalf. In particular, ask him what he has done with the N30 billion recently collected by him from Abuja.


“Just before Christmas Nigeria’s 109 senators collected N200 million worth of bags of rice from FG. Their 360 counterparts in the House of Representatives also collected palliatives worth N100 million ( Did you get anything from them? This is the time to interrogate your senators and reps. It is your right.


“Do you know anything about your senators’ and reps’ constituency projects? Do you even know their constituency offices? Ask your chairman what he is doing with funds received by him. They all owe you explanations.


“As a parting shot, MURIC reminds Nigerians to stop concentrating on the FG for all their problems. We must ease this tension on Abuja so that it can have more time to make better plans for good governance.”





Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Executive Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC).



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