The President Bola Tinubu-led government has assured Nigerians that they can expect the “silver linings, which are at present understated, to blossom into rays of sunshine” in the new year.

The presidency while reacting on Saturday to the widespread hardship in the country, noted that the citizens would enjoy the bold reforms introduced by the administration in all sectors of the economy.

Bayo Onanuga, the Special Adviser to the President on Information and Strategy, disclosed this in a statement on Saturday in Abuja, adding that more of such measures would be taken in 2024.

He said Tinubu had never shied away from acknowledging the temporary pains triggered by the reforms, stressing that proactive measures would continue to be taken.

“Many of these measures are already being taken, and in the New Year, we expect the silver linings, which are at present understated, to blossom into rays of sunshine to be experienced by all Nigerians.

‘’The removal of fuel subsidy and the move to merge foreign exchange rates, two headline reforms introduced by the Tinubu administration since late May.

“It’s caused by problems such as high fuel prices and the depreciation of the naira, two monstrosities that combined to cause a general spike in costs of services and goods,’’ Onanuga said.

He said that the latest NBS report put Nigeria’s inflation at 26.7 per cent in September, which rose to 28.2 per cent in November from 27.33 per cent in October, adding that food inflation remained untamed.

‘’The truth is that the new policies alone are not solely responsible for the economic problems we are facing today. We were destined for the tough and rough patch where we are today because of the prevailing conditions before Tinubu took over on May 29.

‘”As of June 2023, the budget deficit was N10.8 trillion. Actual debt service was 98.95 per cent of revenue, far higher than the projected 59.37 per cent. Inflow into the country’s foreign reserve came in trickles.

“And so bad was the state of affairs that Nigeria could not remit about $800 million to foreign airlines. JP Morgan exposed our near insolvency by claiming in a report that our net foreign reserve was just about $3.7 billion, not the $33 billion-plus flaunted by Emefiele’s CBN.

“President Tinubu, who promised during
the campaign to take hard and difficult decisions, moved to tackle the economic problems from Day One by first dispensing with the wasteful fuel subsidy that was billed to consume about N7 trillion this year, five times more than what was provisioned for capital spending.”