In the aftermath of the last presidential election, Prince Adewole Adebayo, the Social Democratic Party’s (SDP) former presidential candidate, has a stark message for Nigerians. He urges them to bear the burden of opulent and extravagant lifestyles exhibited by current political leaders, a consequence of their voting choices.
Adebayo’s remarks stem from recent revelations about the government’s intentions to allocate an astounding N2.6 billion for utility vehicles at the presidential villa, an additional N6.2 billion for vehicles in the villa’s motorcade, N5 billion to acquire new cars for the first lady’s office, and a staggering N5.5 billion for the purchase of a presidential yacht.
In an interview with Daily Trust, Adebayo emphatically states, “I have emphasized multiple times that votes carry consequences. If you choose leaders who display imperial tendencies, then you should expect budgets of similar proportions.”
He further elaborates that Nigeria’s fundamental problem does not lie in a scarcity of resources but rather in the quality of leadership. He asserts that it is essential for the populace to acknowledge that a politician’s campaign style is a reflection of their governance approach.
“Did the extravagant and high-cost election campaigns signal an intent to govern a nation where a significant portion of the population struggles to afford two meals a day?” Adebayo questions. He goes on to say, “We must make a collective decision about the kind of government we desire because the current imperial system is unsustainable given the country’s economic foundations and the average Nigerian’s standard of living.”