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Dust Over FG’s Silence On Fuel Subsidy In 2020 Budget

The silence of the federal government on the provision for fuel subsidy in its 2020 budget proposal to the National Assembly is generating another dust over what becomes the fate of Nigerians in the consumption of the hydrocarbon product.

Sunday Independent reports that this is the first time the federal government is silent on fuel subsidy in its budget proposals to the legislative arm of government.

There are heightened concerns over how the government resorted to alternative ways of funding the subsidy which was not provided for in the budget would have tagged the action of same

Besides, some observers are of the opinion that if the government intends to continually sustain the fuel subsidy regime, then it should come out in clear terms on modalities for the sustenance of the system it used as one of the centerpiece of its campaign for power in 2015.

While presenting the 2019 budget on December 18, 2018 to a joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja, President Muhammadu Buhari said N305 billion had been earmarked for petrol subsidy in the 2019 budget proposal.

“We have earmarked N305 billion equivalent to one billion US dollars for under-recovery by the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation on Premium Motor Spirit in 2019”, he said.

Human rights lawyer, Dr. Femi Aborishade, told Sunday Independent that the government’s silence on fuel subsidy in the budget proposal to the National Assembly was an indication that the incumbent administration was prepared to remove fuel subsidy and increase the cost of fuel in the domestic market.

Aborishade, who  wondered why huge resources was budgeted  for Presidency in the 2020 budget to the National Assembly emphasized the need for the government to put in place an enabling environment to produce  fuel domestically and export same, adding that the development would discourage fuel subsidy.

SOURCE: DailyIndependent