Wednesday, January 31, 2024

‘Petrol should be over N800/litre without subsidy’- Marketers counter FG, insist fuel subsidy is back

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Oil marketers, on Tuesday, countered the position of the Federal Government, as they insisted that the current pump price of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, should not be less than N800/litre if there was no subsidy on the commodity.

Petrol currently sells at between N580/litre and N617/litre depending on the area of purchase, as the Federal Government, through its Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, had denied reintroducing PMS subsidy.

On Monday, the Group Chief Executive Officer, NNPCL, Mele Kyari, denied the reintroduction of petrol subsidy and claimed that the pockets of queues by motorists observed in petrol stations across the country stemmed from hiccups in products’ distribution from the South to the North and not a lack of supply.

“No subsidy whatsoever. We are recovering our full cost from the products that we import. We sell to the market, and we understand why the marketers are unable to import. We hope that they do it very quickly and these are some of the interventions the government is doing. There is no subsidy,” Kyari had stated.

He had made the claim barely 48 hours after the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria confirmed the return of fuel subsidy.

Also, oil marketers had earlier stated repeatedly that fuel subsidy had returned, as they explained that the landing cost of petrol as of last week was N720/litre.

On Tuesday, they lambasted the NNPCL boss for coming out to state that the government was not subsidising PMS, as they explained why subsidy on PMS had returned.

“I don’t know why the government keeps peddling lies. When they removed the PMS subsidy, a dollar was about N700 and they made us believe that the removal of subsidy would make the supply of products play according to the dictates of demand and supply, looking at forex as the benchmark.

“Now, this is just simple arithmetic, if you removed the subsidy when a dollar was about N700 and today the dollar is more than N1,000, and you are still supplying and giving products at almost the same rate, what is the magic? They are subsidising products as we speak.

“They are spending billions of naira to subsidise products, and because they know that this country may go on fire if Nigerians buy products at about N1, 000/litre, they keep twisting facts. Why can’t they come out and tell the world the truth?” the National Secretary, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Chief John Kekeocha, stated.

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