Politics

With the current hardship, removing subsidy would be suicidal for the masses – NUPENG tells FG

Fuel pump prices

The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has described advise for the removal of fuel subsidy as “suicidal”.

Naija Buzz News had reported that the Presidential Economic Advisory Committee had advised President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately remove fuel subsidy.

Reacting however, the General Secretary of NUPENG, Olawale Afolabi, told The Punch, that carrying out the advice would by suicidal for the masses who are currently going through very hash condition.

“Within the current context of hardship in the country, it is suicidal to remove subsidy now. It is highly suicidal within the current situation.

“Deregulation is desirable in the downstream sector but we cannot deregulate within the context of importation. We have always been saying that domestic production is the way to go.

“So you cannot base our deregulation on the importation of products. It is like selling our employment opportunities and throwing away our resources. We’ve been telling government for years now, make sure that domestic production and refining of the product is on, then you can deregulate.”

Speaking on the benefits of deregulation, he said; “It will engender increased business activities in the downstream sector but it should not be based on importation of products. You should deregulate within the context of local refining.”

Told the refineries were not working, the NUPENG spokesman said; “That means that the advice (of the PEAC) is wrong. That means that the advice is not applicable now.

“And for emphasis, within the context of the current hardship in the country you cannot remove subsidy at this period.”

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