Home APC FACT CHECK: Garba Sheu releases press statement with multiple claims

On May 16, 2023, The Guardian released a news article titled “Buhari leaves inflation at highest in 17 years.” The report showed that headline inflation has risen to 22.22% which is the highest in 17 years. The Guardian news report quoted the last consumer price index (CPI), released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

In response, the Presidency has faulted the Guardian report in a State House press release, signed by Garba Sheu, the senior special assistant to the president on media & publicity. He said The Guardian was twisting politically sensitive facts to suit its preconceived notions.  

Garba Sheu added that it is a “highest fallacy” to tie the highest rise of inflation in 17 years to Muhammadu Buhari, the president of Nigeria. He however said the high inflation is a worldwide problem, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Claim I: 

Inflation is worldwide and caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, not tied to Muhammadu Buhari’s administration


The COVID-19 pandemic, which began in China in December 2019, caused widespread disruption to production and supply chains, leading to recession and inflation in many countries. There are several reports showing that the rising inflation is worldwide and can be attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of them can be found here, here, and here

However, we can not exonerate Muhammadu Buhari’s admission for contributing to the growing inflation and the highest recorded in the last 16 years because, since 2006, Nigeria’s inflation rate has been below what was recorded in April 2023.

In 2016, Nigeria’s economy went into a recession following a lull in economic activities as a result of the delay in the appointment of ministers and other key appointees upon taking over the reins of government in 2015 by President Buhari.

The most recent inflationary figure released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in April 2023, puts headline inflation at 22.22% moving a little above March’s figure of 22.04%. 

Here is a table of the inflation rate for the last 17 years. It is worthy of note that in August 2005, Nigeria recorded its all-time high inflation rate of 28.21%. 

Verdict: Partly True

The claim by Garba Sheu is partly true. While there are evidence and research work showing that the rising inflation is global and caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, there are also clear indications that it all happened under the Muhammadu Buhari administration. 

Claim II: 

France enjoyed a stable inflationary regime of 4.1% from 1960-2022 and is today reporting price increases of up to 1,080.36%. 


The WorldData.info says they conducted an observation in France and the result showed that between 1960 to 2022, the average inflation rate was 4.1% per year. Overall, the price increase was 1,080.36%. That is, an item that cost 100 euros in 1960 now costs 1,180.36 euros at the beginning of 2023.

Verdict: TRUE

The claim that France’s inflation rate stood at 4.1% per year between 1960 to 2022 and the price increased by 1,080.36% in 2023 is true.

Claim III: 

At 10.1%, UK inflation is at a 41-year high


The Office for National Statistics revealed that the consumer price index (inflation rate) for March 2023 rose by an annual 10.1%. This follows an unexpected jump to 10.4% in February, after breaking three consecutive months of declines since October’s 41-year high of 11.1%.

However, the inflation rate of 10.1% for March 2022 is not the highest in the last 41 years. The inflation rate for October 2022 which stood at 11.1% holds the position for a 41-year high. 

Verdict: Inaccurate

The claim that UK’s inflation stands at 10.1% is true, however, that is not the highest in the last 41 years. The inflation rate for October, last year holds that position. 

Claim IV:

Ghana’s inflation rate had hit a two-decades high of 54.1% before a recent decrease


In December 2022, Ghana’s annual consumer inflation rose to 54.1%, an increase from 50.3% in November, of the same year. The inflation rate is reported here, here and here

The inflation rate now stands at 41.2% in April 2023, a decline from 45% in March. 

Verdict: TRUE

The claim that Ghana’s inflation rate had hit a two-decade high of 54.1% before a recent decrease is true. The country recorded a 54.1% inflation rate in December 2022 and a decrease in 2023.

Claim V

Turkey’s inflation rate is 45%


Bloomberg reported that core inflation in Turkey reached an annual 45.5% in April 2023, a decline from 47.4% in March. While the Turkish Statistical Institute puts the annual inflation rate in April 2023 at 43.7%, a decline from 50.5% in March 2023. 

A Reuters poll puts the median estimate for inflation at year-end at 45%. However, this is an estimate from a poll and is unreliable. 


The claim that Turkey’s inflation stands at 45% is inaccurate as the Turkish Statistical Institute and Bloomberg report put the annual inflation rate in April 2023 at 43.7% and 45.5% respectively.

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