Potential Mass Protests Over Rising Food Prices – Lawan Warns

Former Senate President Ahmad Lawan has cautioned that widespread protests may occur if the legislative, executive, and judicial branches fail to address the surging food prices and electricity tariffs.

Lawan issued this warning during a Senate debate on a motion presented by Senator Sunday Karimi of Kogi West, which focused on the urgent issue of food insecurity in the country.

Emphasizing the gravity of the situation, Lawan stated, “If we don’t take immediate steps to control the rising costs of food and electricity, we might witness public unrest. The people’s patience shouldn’t be taken for granted for too long.”

Food Prices Increase by 300%

Senator Karimi noted that basic food items have seen a price increase of over 300% since the removal of the petrol subsidy. He identified several contributing factors, including insecurity in key food-producing areas, poor road infrastructure, and higher transportation costs driven by the subsidy removal and the naira’s devaluation.

Karimi also blamed some merchants and retailers for exploiting the situation to make excessive profits. “The significant price hikes in food and other essential items are not solely due to these factors but also because of the merchants’ and retailers’ drive for supernormal profits,” he explained.

Senate’s Call to Action

In light of these concerns, the Senate has urged the relevant government ministries and agencies to take swift action to address the issue. The motion was passed following a voice vote led by Senate President Godswill Akpabio.

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