The immediate past Kaduna State governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai has descended heavily on President Bola Tinubu on the issue of subsidy on petroleum.

On 29 May, 2023 the president announced the removal of subsidy on petroleum to the chagrin of citizens, most of whom needed the programme to keep their businesses moving. Tinubu made the announcement at a time he was being inaugurated.

Since that time, the pump price has been increasing, the effects of which are on businesses and households. The removal has also contributed to the inflation rate in Nigeria.

In his own assessment, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai said that the president and his administration is still paying subsidy so as to stabilize the pump price.

The former governor gave the comment while talking in Maiduguri, Borno State at the occasion of a Capacity Building Workshop at the International Conference Centre, Musa Usman Secretariat, Maiduguri.

He said that the price of petroleum should have been as high as that of Automobile Gas Oil also known as diesel. Nigerians buy diesel for N1,000 per litre now though the price varies depending on the locations.

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“A good leader must be decisive and have the ability to make good decisions, trustworthy, empower others irrespective of political, religious or ethnic considerations, have clear communication skills and resilient in all ramifications.

“Though it is too early to judge the present administration, it is just been there for only nine (9) months, and you know leadership is work in progress, you start something as I said in my speech, you start a policy because you are absolutely sure is the right policy, but in the course of implementation, if you see bottlenecks, you modify, because the key word in leadership in my view is not ideology or anything, is pragmatism.

“But as I also said earlier during my presentation, the removal of fuel subsidy by the present administration is another good policy by President Tinubu. I have always supported withdrawal of fuel subsidy. But as you can see, in the course of implementation, the government has now realised that the subsidy has to be back, because right now, we are paying a lot of money amounting to trillions of naira for subsidy even more than before, because the impact has been seen and the packages of support that will reduce the impact have not been effective in reducing the impact, and so, the federal government has to backpedal by subsidising petrol. Many people don’t know this.”

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The vocal politician added, “If they want to know whether there is fuel subsidy or not, they should compare the prices of petrol and diesel per litre. This is because, under normal circumstances, petrol is supposed to be more expensive than diesel. As it is, diesel is above N1000, while petrol stood at about N600 per litre. So we are still subsidising for fuel in Nigeria.”