Saturday, September 19, 2020

Jonathan created a constant fuel shortage — Lai Mohammed

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Says Nigerians pay for Jonathan’s sins

By Joseph Erunke

As Nigerians continue to experience incalculable hardship due to the current fuel shortage in the country, the Federal Government has blamed the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan for the development.

The government said Jonathan was at fault because his government never made an adequate provision for the fuel subsidy in the 2015 budget.

This was even when he explained that he inherited the vandalism of the oil pipelines from the immediate past administration, making it impossible even to transport the fuel to the respective distribution points in the country.

Speaking to House correspondents on Monday, after the rescheduled emergency meeting of the Federal Executive Council, FEC, chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari, Information Minister Lai Mohammed, together with Budget Minister and Planning, Udoma Udo – Udoma, insisted that the fuel shortage now being experienced was the result of an inadequate provision for the fuel subsidy in the current year by the regime led by Jonathan.

“One of the reasons for the fuel shortage was the inability of the last government to make adequate provisions for the fuel subsidy.

“We face some other logistical problems, but mainly, we are paying for the sins of the last administration.”

“What I will tell Nigerians is that what we find on the ground is such that we are paying for the sins of the last administration. I speak very seriously. Remember that about two weeks ago, we had to go to the National Assembly for a supplementary budget of 674 billion naira.

“Of that figure, 522 billion naira were due to arrears in the fuel subsidy that was incurred in August last year.

“The solution is what you have seen us do. The first thing we have done now is make sure that unlike before, when traders used to import most of the fuel. NNPC has been involved in the import, because some of the traders had stopped importing for a couple of months. “

“If you see any fuel somewhere today, it is imported by the NNPC. We also inherit pipeline vandalism that has made it impossible for us to even transport fuel. In tanks today we have 14 reserve days and outside the tank we have 10 reserve days.

“The problem is not the lack of availability of the product, it is distribution, due to the oil pipelines that have been vandalized and the stagnation in Lagos. It takes about five days for someone to load fuel with a tanker in Lagos.

“As two days ago this matter has been resolved. The Mosinmi Pipeline has been secured and has led to an improvement in distribution, ”he said.

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