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Government, marketers meet to resolve N200b subsidy balance


Obafemi Olawore

Obafemi Olawore,

THERE are rising optimism that the lingering fuel crisis would be permanently resolved today, as the Federal Government meets the petroleum marketers to draw up modalities of settling the N200 billion ballance of the subsidy claims.

Although, the National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) and their Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) counterpart have temporarily resumed loading at the weekend, the outcome of today’s meeting will determine the fate of consumers in the struggle.

Besides, there was disparity in the amount claimed to have been paid by the government last week, as report showed that government paid N156 billion, the marketers denied and put the figure at N154 billion.

The Executive Secretary, Major Oil Marketers of Nigeria, (MOMAN), ObafemiOlawore, told The Guardian at the weekend that all is set to meet the Federal Government on Monday (today).

He said the meeting would serve as a determinant of the market situation, as the tanker driverstreathen to go back on strike if favourable actions were not taken.

Olawore said:“We collected a post-dated FBN which is about two months old. I want to correct the figure, it is not N156 billion, it is actually N154 billion, N98billion was post-dated for the main subsidy and N56 billion for the interest, making a total of N154 billion.

“So, I can confirm that it is only a N154 billion that has been paid out of a total ofN354 billion. We still have N200 billion outstanding,” he said.

According to him, the industrial action was suspended because the minister has agreed to meet the aggrieved party today to look at how the ballance will be paid.

NARTO is telling us that if they wait for some days and we did not come back to pay them, they have only suspended the strike and therefore they will resume their action. Olawore however said that the action would be resumed if after meeting with government there is no positive response.

Reports have quoted the Minister of Finance and the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, NgoziOkonjo-Iweala, saying that a subsidy payment of N156 billion has been made to the marketers last Thursday.

Meanwhile, the filling stations were still crowded with long queues yesterday, as consumers struggle to get products by all means. The scarcity has almost paralysed business activities across boards, although, investigations revealed that many corporate entities and small scale business patronise black-marketers to thrive.

Far from the official pump price on N87 per litter, fuel now sells for between N100 and N200 per liter depending on the location.

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  • emmanuel kalu

    this is absolute pure madness. let me get this straight, the govt bares all the risk, allows for a good profit for the marketers, pays their interest and forex differences. so there basically no risk for the marketers, yet we the people still suffer under this guys. can anyone tell me why the govt doesn’t go into the contract of supplying the fuel the country needs. the govt goes into a contract with a refinery, a shipping company and transport, to deliver 6 month of all the fuel we need. we would be saving the amount of interest, forex and profit that is paid to the marketers. this is pure madness that we continue to allow this people to continue to loot us and make us suffer for it.

    • New Nigerian

      Like then central bank governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi said – It is a business that any idiot can make money. Just so you know, Government also pays demurrage (which we were told officially have been scammed, as ship are listed to be in Nigerian ports even as it is still in the emanating port, we also learnt that 12 ships arrive on a single day!…watch the debate on subsidy between government and civil society of 2012 on you tube and you’d see what the government is saying, which essentially is that there is no subsidy only rent collection – from a strict economic definition standpoint). There is no secret by Jonathan’s government that subsidy is a scam that they inherited and could not pull the plug on – it is rent collection that OBJ administration put in place.

  • New Nigerian

    The world is awash with crude oil. Incoming administration should pull the plug on all subsidy and implement the same arrangement that Buhari had in place when he was oil Minister and also head of State – I am really encouraged that we would soon see the end of this rent on the Nigerian people put in place by successive PDP administrations