The Federal government has cleared the air on its stance over alleged removal of fuel subsidy, saying it has no plan to remove the subsidy soon. The Minister of finance, Zainab Ahmed disclosed this on Sunday while briefing Nigerian delegation after holding a meeting with investors and institution at the IMF/World Bank meeting in Washington DC.
Mrs. Ahmed was reacting to IMF’s advice to the Nigerian government to remove fuel subsidy and redirect the money to infrastructural development which might have lead to panic buying during the week.
Fuel queues were observed to have surfaced in some part of Nigeria especially Osun state and FCT.
The NNPC has since cleared the air where it blamed the queue to panic buying saying the NNPC has enough fuel to cater for the country in the next one month.
The fuel queues are also believed to have been triggered by the rumor of a planned fuel subsidy removal; a rumor the minister has debunked.
However, she revealed “There is no imminent plan to remove subsidy,”
She disclosed “IMF said that fuel subsidy is better removed so that we can use the resources for other important sectors.
“In principle, it’s a good suggestion. But in Nigeria, we don’t have any plans to remove fuel subsidy at this time because we have not yet designed buffers that will enable us (to) remove the subsidy and provide cushions for our people.
“So there is no plan to remove fuel subsidy.
Meanwhile, “We will be working with various groups to proffer an alternative if we have to. We are not yet at the point of removing fuel subsidy yet,” the Minister added.