‘It’s embarrassing’ — Atiku’s aide chides presidency over UAE visa ban lift claim


Phrank Shaibu, an aide to former Vice-President Atiku
Abubakar, says the claim by the presidency that the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
had lifted a visa ban on Nigerians – when it had not – embarrassed the country.


Last week, Ajuri Ngelale, presidential spokesperson, said
the Middle Eastern country had lifted the ban after President Bola Tinubu met
with UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.


However, a UAE official contradicted the claims by the
federal government.


In a statement on Sunday, Shaibu said the “false” claim by
Tinubu’s government announcing that UAE had lifted the visa ban imposed on
Nigerians is “just the tip of the iceberg”.


 “Last month, the NNPC
claimed to have obtained a loan of $3bn with which it would help stabilise the
naira,” he said.


“We raised the alarm that it was all a ruse to deceive
Nigerians. Now, we have been justified as the naira is now approaching
$1/N1,000 on the black market.


“After his trip to the UAE, Tinubu claimed the visa ban had
been lifted immediately. Now, they have shifted the goalpost after the UAE
authorities revealed that the news was false.


 “This is the sort of
embarrassment Nigeria will continue to attract in this season of balablu.


“The report by FTSE revealed that Tinubu’s so-called FX
unification policy was failing and Nigeria was degraded from frontier market to


Shaibu said the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led federal
government has not put adequate relief in place since the removal of the petrol


“Tinubu removed the petrol subsidy without any plan
whatsoever and decided to hand over a few bags of rice to millions of poor
Nigerians,” he said.


 “Till date, the
minimum wage remains N30,000 or $31 per month based on the parallel market
exchange rate.”


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