The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto, Dr. Matthew Hassan Kukah, says no fewer than 76, 000 Nigerian youths stand the chance of getting gainfully employed if only members of the National Assembly can agree to a reduction of their salaries and allowances by half.
Kukah made the projection on Friday while speaking at the 3rd annual conference of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) in, Ikeja, Lagos.
Drawing inspiration from the economic theory propounded by the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi ,the vocal cleric said: “A Senator earns N36m. Half of the salary, N18million can create 200 jobs, with a salary of N92,000. If you multiply it by 109, that means 21, 800 million Nigerians can (be gainfully employed).
“Members of the House of Representatives receive N25m. Again, half of that can employ 135 Nigerians earning N92,000. Multiply by 360 will give 48,600 Nigerians jobs.”
He added: “If you have a sound economy, you are guaranteed security, and if you have sound security, then you can be guaranteed sound development.
“How does all this impact on development? Are these crises a cause or a consequence? Why has Nigeria remained in this state?
“We are told it is, as Chinua Achebe would say, fairly and squarely, corruption.
We are told the Political class is inefficient etc. There are as many reasons as there are Nigerians of all classes and ages. But, those who lead us have not been sleeping. They have tried.
Every government has had an initiative to develop a sound economy, to alleviate poverty and to take our people out of poverty. No, we have not been governed by wicked men who are just thieves.”
Providing answers to some of the questions raised in his paper, Kukah added: “Will Nigeria ever be safe or develop? It is hard to say but we have to change direction.
“We do not seem to manage resources well. Too much wastage and too much cost for governance that is delivering almost nothing.”
Kukah was the keynote speaker at the event themed: ‘Economy, Security and National Development: The Way Forward’.