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The Senate has urged the Federal Government to be up to its responsibility by providing for the socio-economic needs of Nigerians.

It said the government could tax the rich to provide social security for poor Nigerians as a way of preventing mass exodus of citizens from the country.

The upper chamber of the National Assembly, at the plenary on Thursday, condemned the recent discovery of bodies of 26 female Nigerians in a Spanish boat, while warning against illegal migration to Europe.

Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary, noted that it was the responsibility of the government to cater to the welfare of the citizens.

Ekweremadu said, “The point has been made that the government owes citizens of Nigeria the responsibility to provide for everyone of us and it must not fail on this responsibility. It is important for us to provide some social security for our people even if it means taxing the rich more to provide for the poor; that is what is happening in most (advanced) countries of the world. We must ensure that every Nigerian has the opportunity of having some food on their table everyday, be able to go to school and to afford medicine when ill. These are the basic things the government owes the people.

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“When this happens, I believe that it will reduce the number of people who are desperate to leave this country.

“Yes, we still have some people who are greedy in spite of everything they will still try to find their way out of Nigeria. There is no money on the streets of Europe; that point must be made. People are trying to leave here for other countries with the hope that they will find money on the streets but are disappointed. As a result, they end up in crime and in prisons, and their lives are completely destroyed.

“Our young men and women must note this clearly that it better for all of us to stay back in Nigeria and be able to build a better country, while the government will do everything possible to provide for everyone of us.”

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