Petrol Subsidy And Perils of A Missing Communicator!

Petrol Subsidy And Perils of A Missing Communicator!

One of the biggest leadership challenges facing Nigeria today is the fact that we are yet to have a national leader who can tell Nigerians the way things are. Yes, we truly think that we are “big”, “rich” and “gigantic” when hard data shows that Nigeria is a relatively poor nation with leaders who struggle to communicate vision and reality. 

For years, the federal government has been denying that it was paying a petrol subsidy. But today, we are just learning that through the oil corporation, NNPC, that Nigeria has been paying for fuel subsidies via a new creation called  “under recovery”. Using that financial-nomenclature engineering, the price of petrol has been artificially set and the subsidy has put holes in the pocket of the federal government: “Even with the clear situation, Mr Kyari did not refer to the cost as “subsidy”. He merely said the NNPC pays between N100 and 120 billion a month to keep the pump price at the current levels.”

So, just like that, the government’s crusade that it removed the petrol subsidy was technically not truthful since it stopped paying via the minister of finance but used NNPC to pay via another name. Who is deceiving who since both the finance ministry and NNPC treasury belong to Nigeria?

South Africa budgets $130 billion for about 59 million people while Nigeria spends $35 billion for 200 million. Yet, no one can be bold to communicate  the true state of things in Nigeria. When you cannot explain but prefer to hide your problems, you delay a path to solutions.

The federal government on Thursday admitted paying as much as N120 billion to subsidise the price of petrol monthly.

The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, said this at the fifth edition of the special ministerial briefings coordinated by the presidential communications team.

He said the cost was covered by the NNPC.

Mr Kyari said while the actual cost of importation and handling charges amounts to N234 per litre, the government is selling at N162 per liter.

He said sooner or later Nigerians would have to pay the actual cost for the commodity.

Even with the clear situation, Mr Kyari did not refer to the cost as “subsidy”. He merely said the NNPC pays between N100 and 120 billion a month to keep the pump price at the current levels.

The figures tally with a PREMIUM TIMES estimates of the amount paid by the government monthly to subsidise petrol.

This newspaper reported last week that as it had become clear the Nigerian government continued to subsidise the price of petrol, the nation may be expending a whopping N102.5 billion monthly to reduce the retail cost of petrol.

The sum is higher than the N70 billion the government budgeted for the provision of Universal Basic Education (UBEC) in the 2021 budget, as well as the N45.19 billion allocated for immunization.


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3 thoughts on “Petrol Subsidy And Perils of A Missing Communicator!

  1. They said the man Jonathan was weak and clueless, and they brought the ‘no nonsense’ general, the very one that is weaker than a common civilian. The urchins that occupied streets and highways in 2012, telling the low information public that there’s nothing like subsidy, and they used the propaganda to capture power. Tinubu cannot even cough these days, because anything he says could decide his eternal ambition, just like the current occupant made becoming president his lifelong ambition.

    When you obtain anything via propaganda and falsehood, you will keep putting out fire everyday; even with the amalgam of PR machines at their disposal, their lies still sound lame and stupid.

    You have a president who sees poverty as virtue, and if you are wealthy, then you must be corrupt. His acolytes will tell you how he doesn’t loot or own bank accounts overseas; but they won’t tell if the man ever had meaningful ambition all his life, and so the story goes.

    Okonjo-Iweala fought for subsidy removal, creation of sovereign wealth fund, Integrated Personnel Payment system, TSA, etc, she won some, gut bruises on others. The people who knew nothing about economics or leadership tried to discredit her, they captured power.

    More lies please.

  2. As the home goes so does the country. There’s no magic in political leadership. We stay home during elections, they choose whoever over us. Rigging requires perpetrators, and if we all say no, then it becomes difficult to rig. Keeping people illiterate is a way to keep them quiet, as seen in our investment in education. One can go on and on but we must stop digging this hole and start building again!
    Thank you Prof, I believe the country will flourish again!


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