No Decision on Subsidy Removal Yet – Buhari

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Buhari

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President Muhammdu Buhari says he is not yet convinced on the removal of oil subsidy, promising to handle the matter carefully

AS the call for the removal of oil subsidy continues to grow, President Muhammadu Buhari said his administration had not taken any decision concerning the removal. Buhari said he had decided to handle the matter with care because most of the presentations he had received on the need to remove the subsidies had no depth.

According to a statement by Garba Shehu, senior special assistant on media and publicity to the president, Buhari made his position known after receiving a briefing from the ministry of petroleum resources, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and other agencies in the oil sector at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Monday, July 13.

Shehu said the president told members of the delegation that he would carefully review all the submissions he had received on the need to remove the subsidies. Shehu quoted Buhari was quoted as saying: “I have received many literatures on the need to remove subsidies, but much of it has no depth. When you touch the price of petroleum products it has the effect of triggering price rise on transportation, food and rents. That is for those who earn salaries, but there are many who are jobless and will be affected by it.”

The president said subsidies were not necessarily the most serious problems in the nation’s oil and gas sector. Rather, he identified lack of security, sabotage, vandalism, corruption and mismanagement as the bane of the industry. “We have to go back to the good old days of transparency and accountability,” Buhari said.

He, therefore, directed the NNPC to review existing agreements for the swapping of crude oil for refined products. The review, he said, was necessary in order to inject more honesty and transparency into the process so as to reduce costs. Buhari also asked the NNPC management to do more to improve the supply of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (cooking gas).

—  Jul 14, 2015 @ 13:18 GMT

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