Peter Olaniyi |
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, has revealed the reason why President Muhammadu Buhari stopped the payment of fuel subsidy that led to an increase in pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS).
Speaking on a televised programme monitored by our Correspondent, on Monday, she said the Federal Government took the decision owing to the sharp drop in revenue.
She revealed that Nigeria revenue has dropped by over 65%.
Zainab said a return of the petrol subsidy would lead to fuel scarcity because the government would not have the capability to pay petroleum marketers.
She said “What we have been doing is not sustainable. If we bring back fuel subsidy, we will fail because we will not be able to pay it and the problem of disputes with marketers will come back, then we will have queues again. We just cannot afford it and therefore this deregulation must be made to work.
“We appeal to Nigerians to understand that in the past when subsidy was done, we could afford to do it but right now, we cannot pay. Remember that right now our revenue has gone down by about 65 per cent. So, it is not business as usual. We cannot do what we used to do anymore.”
She added that Nigeria is currently facing harsh times due to the Coronavirus pandemic like other countries worldwide and said the return of subsidy was non-negotiable.
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