June 17, 2024

Fuel subsidy remains removed – Nigerian govt faults El-Rufai, marketers

The Nigerian Government has insisted that fuel subsidy has been removed.

The Federal Government faulted former Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai, and the Independent Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria over their claims that the subsidy subsists.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri, disclosed this in an interview recently shared by his media aide, Nneamaka Okafor.

The minister said that those alleging that the Government is providing subsidies for the product should provide evidence and facts.

He stressed that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Government’s position on fuel subsidies remains unchanged.

However, he stated that every Government has the responsibility to cushion the impact of economic hardship on Nigerians in all sectors, not just in the Petroleum industry.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri, stressed that fuel subsidy was a sensitive issue but noted that the Government had made its position known.

“I don’t want to delve into that issue. It is a very sensitive issue. We should get all the facts.

“As far as I’m concerned, the President removed the subsidy, and it remains removed till today.

“Anybody saying that subsidy is being paid, it is left for the person to bring the facts, and then we will talk about them.

“It may not be determined by market forces, but let us deal with the price as it is today.

“Every government has a duty to do certain things, not only in the petroleum sector but in several other sectors, to cushion the effect and burden on Nigerians,” he said.

Recall that El-Rufai had said that Tinubu’s government is paying more fuel subsidies than before.

Reacting to the development, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria backed the former governor.

The Public Relations Officer, IPMAN, Chief Ukadike Chinedu, said the pump price of fuel should be around N900 per litre without subsidy.

“I have said before that the PMS subsidy has been returned, and the government said it was a lie,” he stated.

President Tinubu announced fuel subsidy removal in Nigeria in May last year, which saw fuel pump price rise to over N600 per litre from N200.

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