By Emmanuel Dagogo, email@example.com, 08033390569
A Niger Delta youth activist has described the proposed subsidy removal by the Federal Government of Nigeria as wicked and ill timed. He wondered why an oil producing Nation like ours will be importing fuel and thinking of removing subsidy on such import thereby making the masses to suffer untold hardship in spite of what they are already going through.
The youth leader who could not hide his displeasure over the matter, noted that the Government should be thinking of how to get the existing refineries working and new ones up and running within the shortest possible time, at which point it may become bearable to remove any phantom’ subsidy’ because then import related variables like freight charges, Forex differentials, Custom duties, multi layered bribes and corruption would have gone off the price template, this he stated makes more sense rather than the voodoo economic idea being fed to the masses.
Dagogo noted that the Government so loathe the so called cartel that it so hypocritically cannot name members of this so called cartel. He wondered why the biggest beneficiaries like the Tinubus, Otedolas of this so called gain from subsidy have become the crafters of our national economic policy.
The secretary of the youth economic contact group a non Governmental organization noted that Nigerians will be willing to buy petroleum products at market prices within a sensible definition of ‘market’ and not within a senseless definition of ‘market’ that includes the very high cost of freight, demurrage, corruption and institutional inefficiency for a country that should be exporting fuel.
He further opined that the removal of subsidy is not a big deal but noted that the Government should meet the following conditions; Name the members of the so called ‘cartel’ , make considerable improvements in infrastructural development, health care delivery, power supply, education, security of lives and properties, a drastic change in the manner Government business is handled, finally and very importantly the reduction of the jumbo pay packages and allowances of Government officials in tandem with the new national minimum wage.
Emmanuel Dagogo is a Social and Public Analyst based in Port Harcourt