U.S. Soldier Killed in Mali Amid Corruption Makes Case for Continued Ban of AFRICOM in Africa

13 Nov

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

The unraveling international debacle of a suspected murder of U.S. special operations soldier Sgt. Logan Melgars in Mali has shined light on what a greater presence of U.S. troops in Africa would look like. The Elite U.S. soldier belonging to the Green Beret outfit of the U.S. Army is now widely believed to have been murdered by two of his brothers in arms from the U.S. Navy, Seals Team 6 outfit. The dispute appears to have arisen due to the deceased discovery that two of his colleagues were stealing money from a fund they were given to pay informants that would provide them with intel. Instead of using the funds for what they were meant, the suspects were discovered mismanaging funds for personal gain.

Needless to say, the entire debacle is giving Africa a clear picture of how U.S. forces operate in Africa, and what increasing their presence would look like. Highly trained elite forces on the ground are given extreme latitude to engage in a host of activities that not even the commanders of those forces are aware of. Before forces can be deployed there is an operating agreement between them and the host countries. However that agreement is made at the leadership level. What this incident shows is that U.S. leadership’s command and control of the actions of its forces on the ground in Africa is at best, extremely limited, and at worst, there is little to no control at all.

The AFRICOM missions are mixing and matching forces from competing units, such as was done in this case with the Navy and the Army, which have completely different command and control structures. Despite efforts by military leadership to integrate forces over the years, this incident proves beyond a doubt that they are nowhere near able to ensure that their personnel across competing units can function effectively on the ground. Further what this incident also is now showing is that for a paltry amount of money, these elite forces can by coopted and diverted from their mission to engage in nefarious activities. Perhaps, politicians, criminals, businesspeople, and corporations are exploiting this and certainly could if their presence on the ground in Africa were to expand in any meaningful way. Just one of these elite forces could destabilize an entire city in Africa, yet alone a small group of them, acting completely autonomously, with an agenda to maximize their profits from their deployment.

Even if these forces were keeping to protocol the fact that they are paying local actors should raise eyebrows. They claim that they are paying for intel so that they can operate and support local forces, but could they also be paying local actors for something else? Could they pay-off and/or hire local police forces to engage in unsanctioned activities, especially when they notoriously go unpaid for months in Africa? Could they pay-off gangs, criminals, rebels, opposition groups, unions, or key figures in society to foment unrest and instability? One thing that’s certain, is that all these scenarios are a possibility, and given that there are many ways to profit from deployment in Africa, there is no way that even the most genuine U.S. commander could ensure that this would not occur given what is now transpiring. They could not prevent their soldiers from engaging in these activities, yet alone even have any knowledge of them.

What is even worse, given that the stated objective of AFRICOM is to establish a foothold in Africa, what incentive do they currently have to quell unrest and instability in Africa? Would it not make more sense for them to allow instability to increase so as to justify a need for their growing presence on Africa soil. This very issue came to the forefront when the involvement of the U.S. in the Boko Haram fight in Northern Nigeria only seemed to make things worse. Further, the same country refused to sell weapons to the elected government in Nigeria that was fighting terrorist allied with ISIS. It was visibly clear that former National Security Adviser Susan Rice harbored overt hatred for Nigeria and its very existence. Only recently with the election of President Donald Trump in the U.S. has policy begun to shift.

If one looks at the model of Afghanistan and the global opioid crisis and prevalence of heroin world-wide, the increase of U.S. forces has indeed resulted in a greater uncontrollable crisis for them. In the context of Africa, if Afghanistan duplicates itself in Africa, African leaders will be faced with extremely well-financed criminal elements like has never been seen before. Wars and conflicts over natural resources continues to foment unrest and instability in Africa, but if illicit narcotics were to be added into the mix, Africa could plunge into perpetual conflict with ungovernable narco-states, natural resource theft, and a total erosion of developmental gains over the past decade. Countries throughout Africa, should critically rethink any expansion of U.S. military presence in Africa, and focus their efforts of capacity building and redoubling cooperation with neighboring states to maintain its own peace and security without the presence AFRICOM.

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates LTD contact us at theassociatesincubator@gmail.com. © Copyright 2017 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 646.481.6263
david.kuranga@gmail.com
https://kurangaandassociates.wordpress.com

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Nigerians Must Boycott MTN

31 Jul

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

Recently the Nigerian Senate began a probe over MTN Nigeria an the repatriation of some $14 Billion US Dollars out of Nigeria over a period of 10 years. If these foreign reserves were still in the Nigerian central bank today, Nigeria would have almost 50 billion in foreign reserve capital. It is likely that the Naira would also still be trading at at least 200 to 1 dollar. Thus this staggering amount taken out of Nigeria’s foreign reserves for just 1 company is in part responsible for the collapse of the Nigerian national currency and the massive inflation that has occurred since. The naira collapse also primarily caused Nigeria to slip into a crushing recession for quite some time. Accordingly, addressing this matter, of foreign exchange hemorrhaging out of Nigeria is among the most paramount issues facing the Nigerian economy today. Since the naira collapse the CBN has put in place strict restrictions on foreign exchange usage and has even limited access to foreign capital for manufactures like Innoson, the Nigerian automaker.

One would think that a competent legislative body would forcefully deal with the matter. Instead, a report released by a committee of the senate called for almost nothing. Further, the rest of the body, while they rejected the report, have done nothing to address this matter. Instead they are seemingly more preoccupied with their ongoing feud with the presidency, that appears to be functioning, or supporting seperatists, than they are with addressing this paramount matter involving MTN and lost foreign reserve capital. We have seen Senators dancing, begging for rice, displaying their cars, and foreign travel, yet we have not seen any tangible leadership on the matter of MTN and its theft of Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves over a 10-year period.

Needless to say, this worthless, time-consuming “probe” and report from the senate, is not worth the paper that its written on. Neither are the people responsible for it, or the entire legislative body that is wasting time revising it. It does not appear that they have any desire to act as a professional government body worthy of being taken seriously. As even this worthless report shows, it is known fact that MTN Nigeria willfully removed $14 billion US Dollars out of Nigeria over a period of ten years. Nobody is disputing this. The real question now is, what is Nigeria collectively going to do about this? What is this Senate going to do about it? What about the House of Reps? The rest of the Federal government? All the state governments? All the local governments? Finally, WHAT ARE THE NIGERIAN PEOPLE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? Shockingly so far, the answer is nothing.

As any good parent knows, when a child misbehaves, and you observe them, yet do nothing, you are in fact endorsing and encouraging this misbehavior. Further, when the other behaved children witness this, you also then encourage them to copy and commence the same misbehaving. So when a child misbehaves, their must be consequences, and they must be disciplined. In the same manner, for willfully moving $14 billion US Dollars outside of Nigeria, (regardless of all the corrupt CBN governors that no doubt aided and abetted them) on principle MTN themselves must face swift an dire consequences, and they must be disciplined, severely. Otherwise, others operating in Nigeria, like the notorious airline industry, and others, will follow their lead. Contrary to the nauseating, infantile approach of the Nigerian Senate, it is not really that complex to figure out what Nigeria’s “leaders” should be doing in response to MTNs misbehavior.

Since clearly none of them have the sense and/or patriotic mindset required to be “leaders” of a Great Nigeria, as a patriotic citizen, I must do my duty and spell it out for them:

*******No self-respecting Nigerian government official, their subordinates, or even immediate family, at the national, state, and local government level should be an active user, or be in procession of a mobile phone, or mobile data service, provided by or linked with the MTN network. Accordingly, as a matter of principle, every singly Nigerian government official, from the national-level to the local-level, without exception, should by boycotting MTN, its network, and all its ancillary services.*******

The mere fact that this has not happened to date and there have been literally no calls whatsoever for it in the halls of government of any level, speaks volumes about the sheer stupidity, obscene levels of incompetence, and total absence of patriotism that exist today among government officials and political “leaders” at all levels in Nigeria. Even with the xenophobic killings Nigerians in South Africa, expelling of Nigerian nationals from South Africa, Nigerians of recent appear more preoccupied with lashing-out at each other than addressing a serious offense committed by this foreign company that has cut in half the value of the naira and halved the average Nigerians purchasing power. A governor even erected a statue of the South African President in Nigeria recently! Do you think a Nigerian company could go to South Africa (or any country), withdraw $14 billion US Dollars leaving their local currency in crisis and economy recession, while at the same time Nigerians kill the nationals of that country in mobs on the streets of Lagos, and expel them at the airport, that the leaders of any country would treat that same Nigerian company with same level of indifference we now see among Nigeria’s “leaders”? Do you think they would be patronizing that same Nigerian company, buying their products and using its services? While in Nigeria, we erect statues to their leader, use their products, and ignore the cataclysmic damage they have caused to our economy and well being of our people as a whole. Even elite companies in Nigeria have lost tens of millions due to this issue of currency collapse.

Contrary to the media hype, the problem with Nigeria today is not its structuring and the solution is not its disintegration or reorganization. Equally to blame are all Nigerian elite from every region. Who among these regional leaders calling for restructuring or succession has condemned MTN for what it has done to undermine Nigeria’s economy and the well being of ALL NIGERIANS? The Biafra IPOB leaders? They have all been silent and said nothing, because they too are just as worthless and incompetent. Perhaps the Northern leaders or Youths as they call themselves? They too have been silent and said nothing, because they too are just as worthless and incompetent. The Yoruba Oduduwa leaders? They too have said nothing because, because they too are just as worthless and incompetent. The fact is, all our elite have sat silent (both government, regional, and otherwise) because they do not care, yet they have distracted the masses with regionalism to mask that plain and ugly truth.

No amount of restructuring or disintegration will change this. The Nigerian masses need to realize that nobody among the regional elite calling for restructuring or succession is worthy of your trust or support. They do not feel your suffering and they will never fight for you no matter what happens. If they cared about the plight of Nigeria’s people, or the people in their regions, there is no way any of them could sit silent and watch South Africa’s MTN exploit Nigerians with impunity. If Biafran leaders cared 1 iota about Biafran Nigerians, they would have no choice but to vigorously fight MTN on their behalf, yet they have not. If the Northern Youths and leaders cared 1 iota about plight of Northern Nigerians, they too would be vigorously fighting MTN on their behalf. If the Yoruba Oduduwa leaders cared 1 iota about Yoruba Nigerians, they too would be in total war with MTN on their behalf. Yet, they are not. Their collective total apathy is one thing they all have in common! Let their collective inaction serve as a reminder to all Nigerians, who these people truly are, and who they truly represent with their calls for restructuring and succession.

Ultimately we as Nigerians are the ones who accept this. It is time for a Nationwide boycott of MTN, and I call on all true Nigerian patriots who actually care about common Nigerian people no matter where they are from, to join me.

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates go to www.kaglobal.net. © Copyright 2017 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 646.481.6263
david.kuranga@gmail.com
https://kurangaandassociates.wordpress.com
http://us.macmillan.com/thepowerofinterdependence/DavidOl

Buhari Falters as Tax Revenue Down in 2016

17 Jan

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

At the beginning of the year, the Nigerian federal government positioned 2016 as the year that they would have a bonanza in new non-oil tax revenue setting their target at 5 trillion naira! They tapped the former head of Lagos tax agency, the Nigerian state with the highest internal revenue, who promised that vigorous compliance and enforcement would do the trick. Despite all the promises made by the Minister of Finance and budgeting and planning;(http://www.premiumtimesng.com/business/197957-must-deliver-n4-96-trillion-year-nigeria-tells-countrys-tax-agency.html), and all the claims touted by the new head of Nigeria’s Tax Agency (http://allafrica.com/stories/201602031047.html), Nigeria’s tax revenue for 2016 was merely a dismal 1.2 trillion; (http://guardian.ng/news/2016-tax-collection-slumps-to-n1-2trillion/). If Nigeria were a meritocracy, where people who occupied positions in government were actually qualified to hold those positions, and once they did hold a position they were required to perform at an acceptable level, undoubtedly somebody would be sacked. Unfortunately Nigeria is not a meritocracy so it is not likely that any of the office holders responsible for this colossal failure that even the IMF noted was the real cause of Nigeria’s deep recession will face any consequences; (http://punchng.com/imf-links-nigerias-economic-woes-poor-management/).

There are three people who are critically responsible for the failure to raise Nigeria’s tax receipts. 1) The minister of finance, 2) the head of Nigeria’s tax agency, 3) the minister for budgeting and national planning. While the former two take a good portion of the blame, the most at fault is the latter. The key reason why Nigeria’s tax receipts are down in 2016 despite claims to the contrary is because the elitist APC administration led by President Buhari, has refused to require Nigeria’s elite to pay their fair share of taxes to the Nigerian treasury despite the disproportionate amount of national resources that Nigeria’s elite have consumed over the previous decade. As I discussed on a show “Deji 360” a few months ago; (https://youtu.be/mhn5RXEaNOA), and as I have been saying for years now even before the administration took office; (https://venturesafrica.com/if-nigeria-wants-to-avoid-economic-collapse-it-should-tax-its-wealthy/), the only way for Nigeria to effectively navigate its way out of its revenue crisis, is to diversify its sources of income by finally requiring Nigerian elite to pay what they owe to the country. To date, the Buhari administration and his minister of budgeting and national planning have sat on their hands watching the downward spiral of the economy and collapse of the naira that I predicted would happen years ago.

The IMF has blamed the administration for its poor management and announced that they only expect the Nigerian economy to improve just slightly next year. While some are taking this as good news, it is actually not. Nigeria has the potential to return to 5% growth, if the APC and the Buhari-led administration were not elitist and did the right thing. The tax reform badly needed in Nigeria, long overdue from the day the president entered office is the primary pathway to change the fortunes for the masses in Nigeria. The dismal performance of the Nigerian tax agency to increase tax receipts through enforcement and compliance measures alone have shown that this is a futile and totally unacceptable strategy. The majority of Nigeria’s taxes are in the hands of Nigeria’s elite who own a disproportionate amount of Nigeria’s wealth and thus consume a disproportionate amount of state resources. Requiring them to finally pay what they owe for this is not only sensible, it is the only morally correct course of action. The fact that it has not happened and the Nigerian nation continues to suffer as a result is a testament to how morally bankrupt the APC and the Buhari administration truly are at their core.

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates go to www.kaglobal.net. © Copyright 2016 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 212.363.0936
david.kuranga@kaglobal.net
https://kurangaandassociates.wordpress.com
http://us.macmillan.com/thepowerofinterdependence/DavidOladipupoKuranga

Managing Director, David Kuranga, Appears on Deji 360 to Discuss Nigeria’s Economic Policy

28 Oct

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates go to www.kaglobal.net. © Copyright 2016 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 212.363.0936
david.kuranga@kaglobal.net
https://kurangaandassociates.wordpress.com
http://us.macmillan.com/thepowerofinterdependence/DavidOladipupoKuranga

#WestAfricasRefugeesMatter

26 Sep

DONATE HERE
imageAre West Africa’s refugees as important as Syrian refugees? Judging from the ongoing discussions at the UN General Assembly and the response from member nations, major donors, the global media establishment, and activists, the answer to this question is a resounding no! As result of Boko Haram Islamic extremist, propped up with heavy weapons flowing from Libya (after the NATO campaign collapsed the country sending its weapons and heavily NATO-armed militants across the Sahel region in Africa), Mali, Nigeria, along with Niger, Chad, and Cameroon have been devastated with a massive refugee crisis of people fleeing violent conflict all over the region.

Today over 50,000 refugee children in the region are in immediate danger of starving to death in the coming weeks and months. There are over 2 million refugees spread out across Nigeria alone, and hundreds of thousands more in neighboring Chad, Cameroon, and Niger. The number of affected persons rivals the over 4 million Syrian refugees that are reported to have fled into Turkey. The response of the international community however has been comparatively muted. No Pope has come to pick up West Africa’s refugees and bring them to the Vatican, the U.S. President has not made plans to lift 10 of West Africa’s refugees to the United States, yet alone a fraction of the 110,000 Syrian refugees he has promised to help relocate the U.S. on top of thousands already brought to the country.

Interestingly enough the campaign for refugees in the region is not asking or seeking to relocate them to another region, which has been highly controversial in the Syrian case. The calls that have fallen on deaf ears, has just been first for food aid, shelter, and basic medical supplies to alleviate the ongoing health crisis. Moving forward there is also a distant hope for some shanty schools where young displaced children can still learn and get a basic education. Yet in the case of West Africas refugees, all this appears to be too much for the international community to pay attention to.

Over the past several months, while aid dollars have continued to flow in support of the ongoing crisis in Syria, very little has trickled to the forgotten refugees of West Africa. Further many countries in Europe have also supported relocating refugees from that crisis in their country at a high cost, something that refugees in West Africa would not even dream of. Many major donors, nation-states have been almost apathetic and/or incredibly slow to act to the crisis in West Africa. The global media establishment have completely burried the story of West Africas refugees. Not a single major magazine or newspaper has lead with a story and a photo of one of the over 50,000 children set to die among the refugees in the coming weeks and months if something is not done. The only images that keep appearing are those of Syrian children.

In the case of the United States, the administration has been openly hostile to the ongoing suffering and insecurity. When the Nigerian government sought to purchase weapons and attack helicopters to route out the Islamic Boko Haram terrorists, heavily armed by the Libyan collapse, the Obama administration actively blocked the sale! Later the administration prevented Israel from selling to Nigeria and finally helped block a private dealer in South Africa from selling arms and helicopters to the Nigerian government reportedly in a coordinated operation with South African intelligence. At the same time, the very same Obama administration actively gifted advanced weapons for FREE to unrecognized militants and rebels in Syria and Libya, and in the case of Libya some of those same gifts of FREE weapons to militants fell into the hands of Boko Haram! All the while the same US government was refusing to SELL arms to the recognized democratic government in Nigeria! The hypocracy shown by the US Government in the crisis was unbelieveable. Needless to say, the heavily armed Boko Haram militants flushed with a cache of heavy weapons coming from Libya (thanks to NATO) caused tremendous bloodshed in Mali, Northern Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger, and Chad until the Nigerian government was finally able to secure new helicopter gunships and advanced weapons from Asia and Eastern Europe to put them down. The very weapons denied them by the US government for over a year.

Fast forward to today, the refugee crisis in the West African region is unimaginable. Tens of thousands of refugees sit with little to no food supplies and a health crisis seldom seen anywhere in the world. Within a few months tens of thousands of children will die from preventable causes of death such as malnutrition, disease, and lack of clean water. Thousands have already succumbed to the same fate and will continue to on a daily basis, as long as their plight continues to be ignored. By all accounts, the condition of a West African refugee in terms of severity rivals the situation facing a refugee in Syria. The number of people facing these conditions in both circumstances are staggering.

It would be one thing if this was happening and the international community was ignoring the plight of all the refugees in general. Yet, this is happening while the crisis of refugees are a major topic of concern to the global community, just not the ones in West Africa. The question is why? With the preponderance of evidence to the contrary, it is clear that the international community and the global media establishment needs to be reminded that indeed #WestAfricasRefugeesMatter. Their plight should not be ignored. Every effort should be made to aid these people in their time of need. They too are the victims of geopolitical power struggles beyond their control. For our part, we are reaching out to the African community in diaspora and all those who are interested to support our GoFundMe campaign and to reach out to other major donors and remind them that a West African refugee is not worth less than a refugee from anywhere else in the world.

To Donate Please Go To:
gofund.me/2qapt5qz

warmPlease share this with everyone in your network! #WestAfricasRefugeesMatter

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D

SHAM! Vultures Promote Asset Sale Plot

21 Sep

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

Crony capitalist and corrupt vultures have begun to circle around the Elitist-serving Nigerian Federal Government under President Buhari. Their goal is to convince the administration that the only way for Nigeria to emerge from its current recession is to sell-off its oil assets to them and their foreign business partners and financiers. They argue that since the government does not have enough to fund its current budget and stabilize its currency, that it should permanently sell all its oil assets to “investors”, and use the proceeds and foreign exchange to finance its budget shortfall and stabilize the national currency. The vultures involved in the plot include top business leaders and lawmakers in Nigeria. The idea that these predatory politicians and crony capitalists are promoting is reminiscent of how Jacob convinced his brother Esau to sell his birthright for a bowl of soup by taking advantage of him at a vulnerable moment when he was starving.

Currently, global oil prices are at an all-time low. Thus, oil assets on the open market are not nearly as valuable as they would be if oil prices were to rebound from where they bottom-outed about a year ago. Thus, common sense shows that it is not advisable for any oil operation to engage in sales of oil assets in this current market. Further, the Nigerian economy is in recession, assets in Nigeria, due to the currency collapse have drastically declined in value. Those who are holding them, would do themselves a favor to wait for the market to rebound before they go about marketing them for sale. Even if one were to structure a mutually beneficial sale of Nigeria’s oil assets, where the state could continue to collect its share of payments, the firms involved could be trusted to pay their due to government, report accurate figures, and submit their taxes to the relevant bodies, right now would be the absolute worst moment to negotiate a sale!

Further, the Nigerian federal government is currently in a legal battle with practically every single private-sector oil firm in Nigeria because from their review all of them have stolen from the country. They have either failed to report the full amount of oil they took from Nigeria, failed to remit the taxes they owe the the country, or outright lied about the times in which they took crude oil so as to take advantage of lower prices. Not a single private sector oil firm has a clean record in this regard, so it is the height of treachery for anyone to suggest that the federal government and more importantly the Nigerian people should trust private-sector oil firms by selling-off their assets to them! The fact that law-makers have the audacity to even breath a suggestion of this given the ongoing legal battles the administration is now having with oil-firms is borderline treason to the Nigerian nation.

Since the crony capitalists and elite lawmakers are so concerned about the plight of the Nigerian economy, to the point that they are suggesting the nation sell their birthright for the bowl of soup that they are offering to feed us for a night, there is something that they and their elites across Nigeria can all do that would go a long way to bring the nation from the brink of economic collapse. Specifically at the very minimum:
A) Every Nigerian household that owns more than one (1) car should pay luxury taxes to the federal government for each additional vehicle (excluding those made in Nigeria).
B) Every Nigerian household that owns more than one home (including abroad) should pay luxury taxes to the federal government on a sliding scale upward depending on the number of homes owned.
C) Every Nigerian (including companies) that owns a vehicle valued over 2.5 million naira should pay luxury taxes to the federal government on a sliding scale upward depending on vehicles value (excluding those made in Nigeria).
D) Every Nigerian household (including companies) that owns a home valued at over 50 million naira should pay luxury taxes to federal government on a sliding scale upward depending on value and the number of homes they own.
E) Every Nigerian that owns a luxury motor boat, yacht, plane, helicopter, jet, and luxury motorcycle, should pay luxury taxes to the federal government on a sliding scale upward depending on value and number of auxiliary vehicles owned.
F) Luxury taxes should be collected at screening of foreign films, and for those purchasing satellite broadcasts of foreign programmes and broadcasts.
G) Foreign brewed wines, champagnes, beers, cigarettes, and other non-essential items and luxuries should be reviewed for luxury taxes.
H) Finally, to all the elite that are hoarding dollars in their domiciliary accounts, any person or company holding more than 1 million dollars of foreign exchange who is not a manufacturer with at least 100 verified employees for every 1 million dollars they are hording, should be required to pay a one-time luxury tax of 1% of the amount of their account or whatever is not linked to manufacturing activity with verifiable employees. As former CBN chief Sanusi said in his open letter, likely many of them received the foreign exchange from the CBN illicitly.

These reforms are long overdue, and are what the administration should have implemented by now. The fact that they have not is the reason why the country is in recession in the first place. There is plenty of money within Nigeria for the nation to pay its bills, fund its budget and stabilize the naira. The money, however is in the hands of Nigerian elite in the private sector and the public sector who over the years have never been required to pay taxes the Nigerian nation like elite in other countries throughout the world. Many Nigerian elite who own properties abroad pay more taxes to foreign countries than they do in Nigeria where they do business and where they make the majority of their wealth. The administration and the lawmakers should not allow the sun to set on 2016 before they implement these reforms and the Federal Government of Nigeria collects what it is owed from the individuals to whom these measures pertain. With the current crisis they have allowed Nigeria to slip into, these reforms are long overdue!

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates go to www.kaglobal.net. © Copyright 2016 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 212.363.0936
david.kuranga@kaglobal.net
https://kurangaandassociates.wordpress.com
http://us.macmillan.com/thepowerofinterdependence/DavidOladipupoKuranga

Nigeria Fails to Meet Q1 Revenue Mark Under Elitist APC

18 Jul

David O. Kuranga, Ph.D.

The author is the Managing Director and Principal of Kuranga and Associates, a full-service investment, political and economic risk consultancy, and asset management firm that specializes in Africa. He is also the author of The Power of Interdependence with Palgrave Macmillan Press.

The federal government acknowledged that in the first quarter of 2016 they failed to reach their revenue target by over 45%! The Nigerian economy has been in a free fall since the collapse of the price of oil to under $50 a barrel. The bulk of government revenue historically has come from oil. Since the collapse in oil, the Nigerian government has sought to shore-up its revenue generating agencies, and enhance tax compliance. In addition, they have sought to level electricity tariffs, stamp taxes on bank deposits, and potentially telecommunications taxes. Noticeably missing from all of this is a single measure to require Nigeria’s wealthy elite to pay any extra to help the nation in its time of need. During the years of high oil prices, Nigeria’s elite made the country one of the top destinations for private jets and luxury products from all over the world. The number of multimillionaires shot up dramatically, and the country became host to Africa’s largest set of private-sector billionaires.

The elitist APC, since taking office, has sought to increase the tax burden on average Nigerians considerably, most notably with the electricity. However, despite the nation’s economy in complete free fall, the elitist Buhari administration has set up a wall of protection around Nigeria’s elite, requiring them to pay nothing extra. Many of these elite are currently hoarding foreign currency in domiciliary accounts in Nigeria, further, many of them moved large amounts of money out of money out of the country before the current government took power. Many of them, like President Buhari himself and his Vice President, own residences in London and in other high-brow communities in Dubai, New York, and elsewhere in the world, with properties under their names or under the names of close relatives. It is a known fact that many of these Nigerian elites, that live and due the overwhelming majority of their business in Nigeria, pay more taxes to the British Crown, than they do to the Nigerian nation. Despite this, the elitist Buhari APC regime, continues to provide excellent security with military, navy, and police to protect the Nigerian elite in their communities without requiring these same people to contribute anything extra to the nation that has made them wealthy and is providing them security and safety in their communities.

NIGERIA’S ECONOMY WILL COLLAPSE

Nigeria has reached a critical stage, since it floated its currency, the economy has shed value and has reduced in size drastically. The floating currency has done absolutely nothing to encourage international investment, and the currency has continued to plummet. Within one year, on this current trajectory, the Nigerian economy will collapse. The country cannot afford to allow the sun to set on 2016 without requiring Nigeria’s wealthy and elite to pay higher tax receipts in-line with what they would be required to pay anywhere else in the world. They receive massive protection from the state and other benefits from the state to live securely in their communities and compounds, fly their jets, and cruise around in their luxury cars and yachts. Over the years, this protection has been provided free of cost, subsidized by the Nigerian people who do not receive anywhere near the level of protection that Nigerian economic and political elite receive in their communities. Needless to say, with the country on the verge of collapse, this dynamic is completely unfair. If Nigeria were a democracy and the APC a legitimate party, they would have moved swiftly to rectify this imbalance by now. However, after being in power for over a year, they have done nothing. Instead they have been robbing the poor seeking to increase their tax burden and force them to pay more to subsidize Nigeria’s elite class even more than they already have.

Kuranga and Associates Limited is an investment management advisory firm and an asset manager with a principle practice area of Africa. To learn more about Kuranga and Associates go to www.kaglobal.net. © Copyright 2016 David Kuranga. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Dr.Kuranga

David O. Kuranga; Ph.D.
Managing Director
Kuranga & Associates Limited
Phone: 212.363.0936
david.kuranga@kaglobal.net
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http://us.macmillan.com/thepowerofinterdependence/DavidOladipupoKuranga