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FG Suspends Subsidy Removal

Nigerians may heave a sigh of relief, at least for now, as the Federal Government made a volte-face, Monday, on the removal of fuel subsidy.

The good news came after a meeting between Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, and Nigeria’s Finance Minister, Hajia Zainab Ahmed, at the National Assembly, Abuja.

Zainab Ahmed said the Federal Government needed to make more provisions in the 2022 Budget which automatically necessitated the suspension of the planned removal initially scheduled for the first quarter of 2022.

The Minister reasoned that removal of fuel subsidy anytime this year may worsen inflation in the country.

“We discovered that practically, there is still heightened inflation and that the removal of subsidy would further worsen the situation and impose more difficulties on the citizenry,” Ahmed said at the meeting with the Senate President.

“Mr. President does not want to do that. What we are now doing is to continue with the ongoing discussions and consultations in terms of putting in place a number of measures.

“One of these include the roll-out of the refining capacities of the existing refineries and the new ones which would reduce the amount of products that would be imported into the country.

“We, therefore, need to return to the National Assembly to now amend the budget and make additional provision for subsidy from July 22 to whatever period that we agreed was suitable for the commencement of the total removal.”

Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Silva, was in the Minister’s entourage.



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