On Monday, the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mele Kyari said President Bola Tinubu’s administration has not reinstated fuel subsidy.
This is despite the confirmation of oil marketers that the federal government has restored subsidies for premium motor spirit (PMS), also known as petrol.
Tinubu had announced the removal of fuel subsidy on his first day in office, leading to an increase in fuel price from N197 to between N480 and N570, the pump price was subsequently reviewed upward to N620.
However, there were reports that the price would go up as a result of fluctuation in the global oil market.
There were also reports that the federal government intervened to prevent further rise in pump price.
There is however a document in circulation that shows that despite the numerous assurances by Tinubu that subsidy was gone, the federal government paid N169.4 billion as subsidy in August to keep the pump price at N620 per litre.
A document by the Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), sighted by our reporter, showed that in August 2023, the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) paid $275m as dividends to Nigeria via NNPC Limited. NNPC Limited used $220m (N169.4 billion at N770/$) out of the $275m to pay for the PMS subsidy. Then NNPC held back $55m, illegally.
Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Festus Osifo, National President of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), also said due to the cost of crude oil in the international market and the exchange rate, the government still pays subsidies on petrol.
Kyari, while, however, reacting to questions from State House reporters at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Monday, after a meeting with President Tinubu, said: “I told you there’s no subsidy whatsoever, we are recovering our full cost from the products that we import. We sell to the market, we understand why the marketers are unable to import. We hope that they do this very quickly and these are some of the interventions the government is doing. There is no subsidy.”
He stated this when asked if it was true that the fuel subsidies had been restored.