Obi: Let us unite to transform Nigeria

The 2023 Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, on Monday, called on all Nigerians to come together and transform the nation.

 

He also called for action among leaders to address the trend of multinational companies leaving Nigeria, stating that it has resulted in an estimated N95 trillion loss over the past five years.

 

Obi, in a statement on Monday via X, highlighted the departure of over ten major companies in the last year alone, including GlaxoSmithKline, Equinor, Sanofi-Aventis, Bolt Food, Procter & Gamble, Jumia Food, PZ Cussons, Kimberly-Clark, and Diageo.

 

Citing various news sources, Obi pointed out the recurring reasons for these exits.

 

“I am compelled to address the alarming exodus of multinational companies from Nigeria, which has cost our nation a staggering N95 trillion in the past five years.

 

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“According to The New Telegraph, in the last year alone, over ten multinational giants such as GlaxoSmithKline, Equinor, Sanofi-Aventis, Bolt Food, Procter & Gamble, Jumia Food, PZ Cussons, and Kimberly-Clark, Diageo and others, have exited Nigeria, citing eerily consistent reasons.”

 

He noted that according to The Punch, “Multinational firms exit Nigeria over harsh business climate.” The Guardian reports, “Insecurity, high energy costs force companies to leave Nigeria.” The Nation states, “Poor business environment, inconsistent policies drive companies out of Nigeria.”

 

Obi further emphasised the nature of these problems, saying, “It is clear these issues are not coincidental but symptomatic of a larger governance problem.”

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He further called for immediate action from leadership, stating, “The responsibility lies with our leadership, those we put in charge to urgently address these challenges.”

 

The former Anambra governor outlined areas for improvement, including creating a business-friendly environment, prioritising security, stabilising policies, and reducing energy costs.

 

He also stressed the importance of “cultivating a culture of transparency, accountability, and good governance.”

 

Obi further called for unity and transformation, stating, “Let us unite to transform Nigeria into a nation conducive to business, attractive to investment, safe and prosperous for all citizens. Together, we can make Nigeria a beacon of hope and progress in Africa and the world.”

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In August 2023, it was reported that GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria Plc had announced plans to shut down its operations in the country. The announcement was disclosed in a press statement and filed with the Nigerian Exchange Limited. It was signed by the Company Secretary, Frederick Ichekwai.

 

In December 2023, Jumia Food, the food delivery service of the e-commerce company, Jumia Technologies, announced plans to shut down operations in Nigeria.

 

Jumia had said that it will close its food delivery business in Nigeria and six other countries in which it operates by the end of the year to focus on growing its core online retail business.

 

 

Akanji Philip

Correspondent at Voice Air Media.

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