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Thursday, November 26, 2015

Oil subsidy regime in Nigeria, time to go!

REMMY NWEKE in this piece canvasses that the best of gift or better still democracy dividend in the first of President Muhammadu Buhari is to let go of the oil-subsidy.

Historically in 1978 fuel pump price was 15kobo per litre and increased to 60k in 1990. Two years later in 1992, it added 10k to become 70k and barely a year subsequently jumped to N3.25k per litre and later same year added N6.75k to become N11 per litre which remained for a while.
Since Nigeria was then under military it was mass anticipation that once there is democracy, it could scale down, but alas, it became the first casualty in the list of democracy dividend as in year 2000 pump price moved up to N20 and before December 2000 added N2k to become N22.
Also in 2001, the federal government under President Olusegun Obasanjo increased pump price to N26 and three years later in 2004 scaled it up to N40 with the rhetoric political promise that the subsidy removed hitherto would be ploughed into bettering the lots of Nigerians. Incidentally the supposed pump prices have never been used to sale fuel in the south east.
Major fear among Nigerians on this subject is that the cost of pump price may go up to about N150 per litre, but as proponents of removal like former governor of Nigeria’s Central Bank, now Emir Mohammed Sanusi II and Dr. Ngozi Iweala; it would curb corruption in the oil sector, especially within Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and enable economic planning for all as Nigeria today does not fix oil prices.
For instance, the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) as storehouse for all subsidy funds by then Head of State, General Sani Abachi to enable government intervened promptly.
Therefore to nail vices in oil sector, President Muhammadu Buhari must exhibit the political will to remove oil subsidy as the best gift APC-led government can give Nigerians at this time.


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1 comment:

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