Fuel subsidy: Kyari tells Nigerians when fuel ques will end after meeting with Tinubu in Aso Rock.Adunni Adetola
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) has assured Nigerians that fuel queues in filling stations, following the affirmation of the removal of subsidy, will soon vanish.
Malam Mele Kyari, the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), briefed State House correspondents after meeting President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Tinubu, had in his inaugural speech on Monday, commended the past administration for phasing out the petrol subsidy regime, which had increasingly favoured the rich more than the poor.
Kyari said that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) stipulated that the price of petroleum should be determined by market forces.“I know all us must have seen the fuel queues in filling stations across the country.
“It is very understandable that whenever announcements to changes to prices of petroleum happen, both buyers and marketers will like assurance of what exactly this means and typically, consumers will rush to the filling stations to fill their tanks and that is why you are seeing these queues.
“And also for marketers, they will like to see exactly what this means in terms of how are we going to sell the products if subsidy on PMS is removed? “And the combination of the two is what you are seeing -the obvious dislocation on distribution and we believe that this will go away very quickly.
And as you may be aware, PIB which was accented in 2021 and became an Act, made it clear that the price of petroleum must be priced at the market,” Kyari stated.He said, however, that the government also decided to provide for subsidy in the 2022 Appropriation Act and also for half year in 2023.
According to him, while the PIA is clear that petroleum should be priced, but it did not say that government cannot put its money in any way it wants.“Therefore, we, as a commercial company established by the PIA, we are doing it strictly as business; delivering value as supply of last resort by virtue of the law but at a cost to the federation.
And that cost includes the cost of subsidy; this subsidy cost should have been money that will be given to the NNPC, may be on monthly or daily basis. “However, since the provision of the N6 trillion in 2022 and N3.7 trillion in 2023, we have not received no payment whatsoever from the federation; that means they are unable to pay and we continue and continue to support the subsidy from the cash flow of the NNPC.”
He also explained further:“That is when we net off our physical obligations of taxes and royalties, there is still a balance we are funding from our cash flow and that has become very difficult, and it affects our other operations.
“We are not able to keep some of this cash to invest in our core businesses and the end result is that it can be a huge challenge for the company. “And we have highlighted this severally to government; that they must compensate NNPC; they must pay NNPC for the money we have spent on subsidy.’’
The NNPC Ltd boss said that by virtue of the law and the Appropriation Act 2023, funding was no longer available while the country could no longer fund the subsidy and no longer able to pay.
Therefore, we are pleased to note the president’s commitment to the removal of subsidy because they cannot afford it anymore. “And we will take necessary steps to ensure that we recover our cost from the market and also being mindful of the fact that situations like this can lead to exploitation of customers.
“And we are working with the regulator who is here with me to see how we can cap such excessive management of greed to say the least,” Kyari said. “And this will be contained by virtue of the provisions of the law; the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) and the competitor agencies will play their part
“We believe very strongly that this is actually belated; we have been doing subsidy that has no significant value to the rest of the federation and the rest of our countrymen.
“And we think this is a very commendable step taken by the president to bring into effect the provisions of the law,’’ he added.
On his part, Mr Farouk Ahmed, the Chief Executive of NMDPRA, said that the pronouncement by the president was in tandem with the law.
Ahmed said that prospective importers who met the criteria would be licenced to import fuel in order to ease pressure on NNPC.
He said that efforts were underway to make sure that consumers were not exploited. “We also understand the provision of the law that provided for the removal of subsidy from February 2021; therefore, the president’s pronouncement yesterday was in line with the law.
“However, what I can assure is that we are ready to license anybody who wants to import because NNPC has always been supplier of PMS. With the removal of subsidy as pronounced by the president that opened the floodgate for any intending marketer that wants to import PMS, we are ready to issue lincences for them to do; at least that will open up competition and of course there will be less burden on NNPC.
“I also want to assure the general public that NMDPRA and the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission will make sure that consumers are not taken advantage of,’’ he said. (NAN).
Matawalle left behind an empty treasury and huge debts for the state- Dauda Lawal.
The newly sworn-in governor of Zamfara State, Dauda Lawal, has accused his predecessor, Bello Matawalle, of leaving behind an empty treasury and huge debts for the state.
Mr Lawal disclosed this shortly after he was sworn in as the governor of the state on Monday.
The governor, however, promised to bring rapid development and tackle the myriad of challenges confronting the state. “I want to inform the people of the state that, I met an empty treasury. I also inherited huge debts and liabilities amounting to billions of naira.
“I am, therefore, appealing to the people of the state to be more patient and give me your full support and cooperation in this trying period. “I promised to bring rapid development in the state during my campaign, particularly in terms of security, education, job opportunities, health and agriculture,” he said.
Mr Lawal, who said he had come to rescue Zamfara, called on the youths to shun all forms of criminal activities.“I have come to rescue Zamfara State by the grace of God and I will do my best to move the state to greater heights,” the governor added.
Both Mr Matawalle and his deputy, Hassan Nasiha, were not present during the swearing-in ceremony.
Tinubu should appoint the best Nigeria can offer when forming his team- Pa Fasoranti.
Reuben Fasoranti, former leader of Afenifere, says President Bola Tinubu should appoint competent people to serve in his administration.
In a statement on Tuesday to congratulate Tinubu on his inauguration as president, Fasoranti said he is convinced that Nigeria would be great if his plans are “religiously and meticulously” implemented.
The Afenifere elder said the country is facing a number of challenges that require urgent and decisive actions.
“I am highly delighted to write on behalf of myself and Afenifere to congratulate you on the propitious occasion of your inauguration as the 16th president and commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he said.
“Nigeria is facing a myriad of challenges on multiple fronts that require urgent and decisive actions. These include the exceptionally high level of insecurity, poor and nosediving economy, derelict infrastructure, youth unemployment and the hydra-headed corruption among others.
“I have gone through your ‘Renewed Hope 2023 – Action Plan for a Better Nigeria’ publication and after listening to your maiden broadcast, I am convinced that the plans enunciated in the speech and personal manifesto are religiously and meticulously implemented the challenges will be mitigated and Nigeria will surely be a greater nation.
“In selecting your team, please pick the best that Nigeria can offer and I believe that this country is well endowed with the human resources that can turn her fortunes around.
“Choose men and women of impeccable character, competence and capacity and post them to their areas of maximum benefit for the nation.”
Fasoranti said Afenifere would support the administration of Tinubu.
Understanding Fuel Subsidy.
Fuel subsidy refers to the financial assistance provided by the government to reduce the cost of fuel for consumers. It involves selling petroleum products at a lower price than the actual market value, with the difference covered by the government. The intention is to make fuel more affordable and to alleviate the burden of high energy costs on the population.
Effects on Everyday Nigerians Increase in Fuel Prices:
The removal of fuel subsidy will inevitably lead to a significant increase in fuel prices. This rise will directly impact the cost of transportation, affecting the prices of goods and services across the board.
The average Nigerian, already grappling with a high cost of living, may experience additional financial strain.
Imagine a typical Nigerian worker who commutes to work daily. With the removal of fuel subsidy, the cost of transportation could increase by a substantial margin, resulting in reduced disposable income and potential hardship.
The ripple effect of increased fuel prices will likely lead to a surge in inflation. As transportation costs rise, the cost of transporting goods and services will also increase. This increase in production costs will be passed on to consumers, leading to higher prices for basic necessities, such as food, utilities, and healthcare.
For instance, the removal of fuel subsidy could cause transportation costs for farmers to rise significantly. Consequently, the price of agricultural produce may skyrocket, making food less affordable for the average Nigerian. The removal of fuel subsidy in Nigeria is a complex issue with both positive and negative ramifications.
While it may alleviate the burden on the government’s finances, it could also lead to increased fuel prices, inflation, and financial strain for the average Nigerian.
Fuel Scarcity : LASTMA Cautions Motorists Against Congesting roads Around Filling Stations.
…. Warns Against Storage of PMS at Homes, Offices and Public Places in Lagos.
The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) has cautioned motorists queuing up for fuel at different filling stations not to cause traffic congestion and hinder other road users.
The General Manager of LASTMA, Mr. Bolaji Oreagba said this today while deploying more Officers on monitoring traffic around filling stations including other traffic-prone areas across the State. Mr Oreagba disclosed that the deployment became imperative following reports of long queues around filling stations caused by motorists parking indiscriminately and blocking roads while queuing up to buy fuel.
Oreagba expressed displeasure at the disorderly behaviour of some drivers, who queue up haphazardly around filling stations disrupting the free flow of traffic. He urged petrol attendants and marketers to ensure that products are sold in an orderly manner so as not to infringe on the right of other road users using the right of way.
In his words, “Buying fuel is not an excuse to block and impede traffic flow across the State. In as much as we want our roads to be free, we do not want fuel queues to constitute a burden for other road users across the State”.
The General Manager reiterated that efficient traffic management has remained crucial in the attainment of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s seamless multi-modal transportation system in Lagos.
He equally advised motorists including members of the public against unsafe fuel storage inside vehicles, homes, markets and workplaces.
“Landlords and tenants should shun inappropriate storage of fuel at homes and public places. Filling Stations must equally avoid dispensing fuel in polythene bags to avoid scuffle that can spark off a fire incident”, Oreagba advised.
He maintained that the public needs to be cautioned against the possibility of a fire outbreak or explosion if there is a source of ignition such as a naked flame or an electrical spark near the stored petrol.
Subsidy Removal: Brace Up For More Rude Shocks, Surprises — LP Tells Nigerians.
– Knocks Tinubu For Not Consulting Organised Labour, Stakeholders
The leadership of the Labour Party has reacted to President Bola Tinubu’a removal of fuel subsidy, saying the masses should ‘brace up for more surprises and rude shocks.’
The warning was issued by the Acting National Publicity Secretary of LP, Obiora Ifoh, in a statement issued in Abuja on Tuesday evening titled ‘Removal of Fuel Subsidy, First of Many Shocking Policies to be Expected.’
Tinubu had earlier on Monday, in Abuja, affirmed that his administration would not continue to pay subsidies on petroleum products.He said given the high opportunity cost the Federal Government was suffering to fund subsidies, it was no longer justifiable to continue.
“The fuel subsidy is gone!” Tinubu exclaimed during his inaugural address at Eagle Square, Abuja, shortly after he was sworn in as the 16th President of Nigeria. But Ifoh condemned the president’s action, saying it was a unilateral decision taken without any form of consultation with organised labour and other relevant stakeholders.
The party also expressed regret that the removal of petroleum subsidy has inevitably started having negative effects on Nigerians who may sooner or later be thrown into further hardship.
The LP image maker added that the majority of petroleum marketers have started selling petrol for as high as N750 in some states with a number of motorists lamenting that queues have returned to filling stations.
The statement said, “The Labour Party has been confronted with the stark reality that less than twenty-four hours after President Bola Ahmed Tinubu took over the reins of power, Nigerians woke up to see the pump price of petrol shot up to N600 per litre and N750 per litre in the black market. This is arising from the immediate removal of subsidy on petrol as announced by the new administration.
“As we speak, the queues are back again and Nigerians will, as was the case in the previous administration, begin to keep vigils in the filling station to get just a few litres of petrol. As expected commercial transporters have hiked their trip fares across the country in response to the developments. While product hawkers are once more the king of the jungle.
“This scenario easily reminds one of the stories of a certain Pharaoh who on an assumption of the throne empowered his taskmasters to triple the daily tasks of the Jews. What a way to announce an emergence as the sheriff in town. President Tinubu’s first executive proclamation was such that it is purposed to inflict pains on Nigerians.”
Ifoh admitted that Labour Party also proposed ending the subsidy regime during the last election campaign, he however stated that they said it would be done on the condition that necessary policies and palliative measures would be put in place.
According to him, a sensitive decision such as subsidy removal ought to have been done gradually after due consultation with stakeholders’ input bearing in mind that a number of refineries will have to be recalibrated to near-optimal functionality.
“The removal of subsidy by presidential fiat as witnessed yesterday was not only shocking but practically took every Nigerian by surprise. The reason we advise Nigerians to brace up for more rude shocks and surprises in the days ahead.
“Labour is therefore condemning the unilateral decision by President Tinubu who without any form of consultation with the stakeholders particularly, the Labour unions removed the subsidy on petroleum and has instantly pushed Nigerians further into hardship.
“Labour Party has observed with pains that some of the petrol station operators simply shut their filling stations and depot owners also shut their operations. They have also argued that no clarification was given on the execution of the policy. We are therefore calling on the government to quickly reevaluate the policy, and come up with a more practical plan to remove the subsidy in such a way as not to jeopardize the peace of the nation.
“We are also calling on the various unions, social activists and Nigerians, in general, to be watchful and ensure that democracy is not derailed by whatever means and guise,” he stated.
Buhari’s Ex-Spokesman, Femi Adesina Returns To The Sun.
Former Special Adviser to ex-President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, will on 1 September assume the position of Executive Vice Chairman at The Sun Newspaper.
Mr Adesina, who served as the Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief of the newspaper before his appointment as presidential spokesperson , told The Crest in an interview on 26 May, his last working day, about the new appointment approved by the company’s founder, Orji Kalu, a senator.
“I came from The Sun newspaper. I was the MD/Editor-in-Chief (of the publishing company).
And when I wanted to leave, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu said ‘Don’t resign. You may get to the government and you don’t like it. You can always come back. Or, you may get to the government and stay eight years; you can always come back. I’m going to make you the Executive Vice Chairman of the company.’ Not only did he say it, he issued me the letter. Yes, I have the letter”, Mr Adesina said in the interview.
The Crest further reported that the long duration to start the new job is to allow Mr Adesina “enjoy a well-deserved rest having been unable to go on leave throughout the eight years he served as the ex-President’s spokesman.
”It said the former presidential aide intends to go to “a quiet place somewhere in the world to write his memoirs”. Mr Adesina was appointed Special Adviser (Media and Publicity) by ex-President Buhari on 31 May, 2015.
He had served as the president of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE).