Toll Gate: PDP Knocks Buhari Govt; Says Development Ill-Conceived
Image courtesy Lagos traffic

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has bashed the President Muhammadu Buhari government to planning to return toll gates on highways.

Nigeria’s Minister of Works and Housing Babatunde Fashola said this on Wednesday at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja.

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“There is no reason why we can’t toll, there was a policy of the government to abolish tolls or as it where, dismantle toll plaza but there is no law that prohibits tolling in Nigeria today,” Fashola said.

“We expect to return toll plazas, we have concluded their designs of what they will look like, what materials they will be rebuilt with, what new considerations must go into them.

“What we are looking at now and trying to conclude is how the bank end runs.”

However, the PDP in a statement condemned the move, describing it as completely ill-conceived and anti-people.

In a statement on Wednesday, it recalled that “Only recently, President Buhari approved the increase of Value Added Tax (VAT) from 5% to 7.2% despite outcry by Nigerians, who are also being made to pay exorbitant tariffs for electricity and other essential services.

“Since President Buhari came into office in 2015, his administration had continued to increase prices and impose all manner of levies on Nigerians which proceeds are being frittered by the cabal in the presidency leading to a bleeding economy and despondency among the citizenry.

“The PDP says that instead of putting more pressure on already impoverished Nigerians by introducing toll gates at this point in time, President Buhari should exert himself, seek ways of creating wealth out of the abundant resources at the disposal of his administration or make haste to surrender the reign of governance to more competent hands.”

According to the statement, “Nigerians could recall that the PDP administration, in keeping with our determination to ensure the wellbeing and economic prosperity of our citizens, dismantled toll gates, cut tax profiles and applied our energies towards wealth creation.

“It is therefore certain that if our nation were under a PDP administration, as desired by Nigerians, competent hands would have been on the deck to proffer ways to create wealth for governance instead of turning our citizens into vassals who are overburdened by heavy taxes.

“The PDP, therefore, charges President Buhari to immediately rescind the decision to return toll gates on our highways as such is not in the best interest of Nigerians.”