Fuel subsidy removal: Tinubu is working on palliatives — APC USA

Tinubu official

Prof. Tai Balofin, Chairman APC USA, on Sunday in Abuja said Nigerians should trust President Bola Tinubu to work out palliatives to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal.

He said this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), adding that the challenges that came with the development would soon be over.

He, therefore, appealed to Nigerians to be patient with Tinubu’s administration on the removal of fuel subsidy, adding that it was all in the country’s interest.

President Tinubu on May 29 while delivering his inaugural speech, said the Federal Government could no longer sustain fuel subsidy.

By the removal of fuel subsidy, petroleum pump price is now fixed at N540 per litre as against N195, a development the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) said it was opposing.

The NLC had said it would embark on a nationwide strike on Wednesday to force government to reverse its decision.

The congress cautioned that it would not go back on its decision to down tools if government and the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited failed to reverse the increase of the price of petrol to its earlier price.

“I just want to plead with all Nigerians to be patient and have an understanding of the situation,” Bolofin said.

The APC USA chairman, while appealing to Nigerians to be patient with government, said though they resided abroad, they felt the pains of Nigerians.

He added that Nigerians in the Diaspora could perfectly relate to the pains Nigerians were passing through back home.

He expressed confidence that the Federal Government under Tinubu was working a way round the situation.

“I trust that the president will put some measures in place to cushion the effect of the subsidy removal so it does not go overboard,” he said.

Balofin, however, explained that in other countries, especially in the United States, the cost of fuel ranges from $3.40 to $3.50 per gallon when compared to what we buy in Nigeria.

“Again, the important thing is that if there is fuel, even if it is expensive, it is going to balance the equilibrium as soon as possible.

“But I trust President Tinubu is a strategic person who knows what to do and how to manage Nigerians and resources. I believe we will start enjoying the benefit any time soon,” he said.

He added that the decision to remove the subsidy was collectively taken by stakeholders, including members of the House of Representatives who had gone through the rudiments of the removal.

He said it was therefore, the responsibility of the lawmakers to appeal to Nigerians about the positive impact of the removal.

Also, Mr Tunde Doherty, a chieftain of APC U.S.A, said the United Kingdom did not pay subsidies on its petroleum products.

He described petrol subsidy as an ‘infectious enjoyment’ that had been allowed to thrive for too long in Nigeria.

“We have to be very factual and truthful to Nigerians at the start of this regime, fuel subsidy has not helped us in any way.

“Rather it has become a kind of infectious enjoyment in Nigeria because the determinant of pricing is the marketers.

“Now that there is no subsidy, I agree that it might be very difficult for people at this time, but I can tell you that President Tinubu is in charge of the situation.

“Within the next few months, he will cushion the effect of what Nigerians have suffered,” Doherty assured.

He said, in the United Kingdom and the United States, prices of petroleum products were not equal because there was no subsidy anywhere.

“In the UK today, we have Costco Oil selling for £1.3 and we have Sabre (Oil and Gas) selling for £1.7. So it is a liberalised economy with petrol.

“We cannot continue to let Nigerians suffer, we have to start by telling them the truth about oil subsidy. It does not take us anywhere. It is just pretentiously putting us in a future we cannot predict.

“There is no subsidy where we live in the Diaspora and we enjoy fuel, we have never experienced fuel scarcity. The time for us to enjoy that Renewed Hope is here,” Doherty stressed.