Senatorial aspirant of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for Imo East senatorial district in the 2023 election, Mr Chyma Anthony,
has taken a swipe at the Federal Government over the loss of lives in
the recent explosion at the site of an illegal refinery in Abaezi
community in Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State, which
claimed over 100 lives.
Anthony, while speaking to journalists on Saturday in Abuja slammed the
Federal Government for solely responsible for the craze by poor
Nigerians to survive by any means including engaging in the business
of illegal refinery across the Niger-Delta and other oil producing
Anthony who is the chief executive officer and president of Chyma
Anthony Poverty Must Go Foundation asserted that the act of spending
4trillion naira on fuel subsidy every year by the Federal Government
is fraudulent and an ignition for mass poverty.
He said as compared to Dangote Group whose refinery will be refining
about 650,000 barrels of crude oil and cost about 4.1trillion naira to
build, “The Federal Government spending 4trillion naira on subsidy alone is deceitful
and lacks accountability”.
Anthony expressed displeasure at the incident that left scores dead,
lamented the poor handling of the economy in the last seven years
which has made Nigeria heavily burdened by poverty, hunger and
“I have to call on the Federal Government to establish a real system,
a system that will take care of the people economically and otherwise.
“If our refineries are not working, it can be resuscitated or sold out
for it to be managed. In a situation where we have the National
Assembly approving 4trillion naira for fuel subsidy, which is
disheartening and is the worst economic crime ever in life.
“If you spend 4trillion naira for one year on fuel subsidy when Dangote
refinery is 4.1trillion naira; who is deceiving who, why should that
be in Nigeria? That is lack of accountability.
“The federal government has failed to protect the masses both economic
and security wise,” he said.
Anthony opined that the government should completely remove subsidies
as “subsidy is a fraud, it is the same thing we have been hearing
every day and nobody has been able to completely tell us how this
thing works. Imagine what 4 trillion naira will do to this country in
terms of building modular refineries and industries”.
He added that, if Nigerian government provides jobs for the people,
there won’t have been the need to engage in illegal refinery and that
the security operatives such as the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and
the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) should have
detected such illegal activities first beforehand.
Anthony therefore advices that the Federal Government need to be
intentional rather than reactionary. He sympathises with the families
of the dead urging the Federal Government in conjunction with Imo
State Government to build modular refineries so that the people of Imo
state can be employed.
On what he intends to bring to the Senate, Anthony said: “In the first
place I will have to handle time wasters in the National Assembly,
most of them I think they go there for the name, money, wealth for
power; whatever it is, but they have never addressed the real issues
ravaging this country.
“So going to the Senate, we are going to answer the call of Nigerians
because Nigerians are not happy. We were born here and we know the
problem of this country. Any bill that is not for the benefit of the
people will not be looked at. People going to the Senate this time
should be prepared that it’s not business as usual because some of us
are coming to oppose them.
“We cannot have a system where poverty is killing people, we have
bandits, people are hungry, look at the streets, people are begging
for money including 3, 9 years-old, but if we take care of them we
have solved the problem,” Anthony stated.