FG Settles Marketers Subsidy Arrears
The Federal Government has initiated steps to commence the settlement of the payment of the subsidy arrears due petroleum marketers involved in fuel importation.
The move came after petroleum marketers under the aegis of Depot and Petroleum Product Marketers Association (DAPPMA) and Jetty and Petroleum Tank Farm Owners of Nigeria (JEPTON) threatened to initiate strike actions that would cripple the national fuel supply.
The subsidy payment process was stopped several weeks ago by the Minister of Finance, Ngosi Okonjo-Iweala, in order to verify the integrity of the claims being made by the marketers.
However yesterday the Minister of Finance ordered that the payments re-commence. According to a statement from the Minister’s office, the payments are to be made “as soon as supporting Sovereign Debt Notes are provided by the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).”
The statement reads, “The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has directed the Debt Management Office to pay marketers with verified claims as soon as supporting Sovereign Debt Notes are provided by the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency.
“The directive is to reinforce the Federal Government’s determination to ensure that there is no disruption in fuel supplies across the country.”
It also said, “To prevent overpayments, verification of claims is a cornerstone of the procedures adopted by the Federal Ministry of Finance for managing fuel subsidy payments.
“The minister clarified that following the report of the Presidential Committee headed by Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, it is clear that some marketers also owe government significant sums of money and that government expects that these will be paid.”