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“Subsidy Remains in 2013…Please Bear With Us” – President Jonathan

By on November 19, 2012

Concerning the contentious issue of fuel queues across the country, the President has asked Nigerians to bear with his administration as the government is struggling to get this right.

He however alluded to the fact that part of the problem with the attendant fuel crisis in the country was due to the activities of unscrupulous businessmen who were adamant on hoarding and selling petrol at exorbitant prices wherever possible.

He said, “There is no queue in Benue (Benue Republic), and they get their fuel from Nigeria. However there are queues in Lagos.”

He said, “This situation can manifest in different areas, some people may have the product and decide to manipulate the system so that they can get more money.

“I am asking Nigerians to bear with us. I got the report from the ( Aig) Imokhuede committee on Friday, an advanced copy of the report. The arguments by the marketers is that  it is government that is owing them. (But) the preliminary report we have indicates that they owe the government.

“They (oil marketers) are businessmen; they could decide to manipulate the system to get more money. I got a copy of the report. We will look into it. Experts are being brought in to do forensic audit. The human element is there, and we have our own challenges. I believe that by the time we finish sanitizing the oil sector, the issue of fuel queue will be put behind us for good.”

The President made the statement whilst fielding questions from a panel of interviewers at the Presidential Media Chat held at the Aso Rock Villa yesterday evening. The event was broadcast on live television and saw the President tackling several issues including Power Privatization, Boko Haram, Corruption and other matters on the minds of Nigerians.

Concerning rumors of a total fuel subsidy removal in 2013, the President assuaged the minds of Nigerians concerning the issue. He said that his administration has already made provision for Fuel subsidy in the 2013 budget, so how could the same government that made the provision yank the palliative measure seen as the only social welfare available to Nigerians.

“If we are going to remove subsidy from January, as you are afraid we will do in January, we couldn’t have made provisions for it in the 2013 budget. We have made provisions from January till December,” said the President.