Veteran Nollywood actress, Kate Henshaw, has lamented the hardship caused by the fuel scarcity that has affected some parts of the country including, Lagos, Ogun and Abuja.
After two weeks of scarcity in the FCT and some bordering states, the fuel queues reached day three in Lagos, Ogun, and other parts of the country.
While commuters have been left stranded as a result of the scarcity, residents are being extorted by black market traders who sell a litre of petrol for as high as N300.
The approved pump price of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, is N165/litre, but marketers are currently kicking against this rate, saying that it is no longer sustainable going by the global crisis in the energy sector.
A retail outlet located in the Kubwa Village Market, Abuja, dispensed petrol at N195/litre to motorists and still had queues.
Reacting to the recent development in a recent tweet on Wednesday, the ‘Blood Sisters’ actress stated that fuel subsidy is a scam as she remixed the trending ‘Adulthood Anthem’ by fast-rising star Lade.
“Just looking at the tired faces of people on the road trying to get home Waiting endlessly for transportation Long winding queues on the road of cars trying to buy petrol. Had to remix this tune with my words. The suffering is relentless,” Henshaw said.
Watch the video below
Just looking at the tired faces of people on the road trying to get home
Waiting endlessly for transportation
Long winding queues on the road of cars trying to buy petrol.
Had to remix this tune with my words.
The suffering is relentless 😡😤 pic.twitter.com/n6bJZvApX2
— Kate Henshaw (@HenshawKate) June 22, 2022
Meanwhile, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, has described the fuel subsidy as an unplanned deficit, which is hampering the government’s ability to invest in human capital development.
This is just as the World Bank said that the cost of fuel subsidy in Nigeria has exceeded the government’s spending on health, education and social protection for Nigerians.
The apex bank, therefore, said that removing fuel subsidy would help the government towards its poverty reduction scheme.
According to the finance minister, the government has to cut down on some investments and acquire more debts to fund fuel subsidy.
She said, “This PMS subsidy is costing us an additional N4tn than was originally planned. So, this is an unplanned deficit. We have gone to the National Assembly, and we have got approvals. The approval was simply to cut down on some of the investment costs. Some investments that we needed to make in the oil and gas sector, which we are delaying and deferring to a later time, and reducing the rollout of those investments.
“But we also had asked that we needed to borrow money, which is very serious. Already, our borrowing has increased significantly, and we are struggling with being able to service debt because even though revenue is increasing, the expenditure has been increasing at a much higher rate.
“It (petrol subsidy) is impeding the government’s ability to be able to invest in human capital development. N4.5tn is money that we could have invested in health or education, but we are now investing it on consumption, which is very wasteful. How many Nigerians own cars that are benefiting from this subsidy?”
Ahmed added that the government was planning to provide some form of cushioning support to reduce inflationary pressures on food and transport prices.
In the area of transport, she said that the government is planning to help marketers that move diesel across the country with some form of relief. She added that the government was careful so that this relief does not transform form of subsidy.
She further said that Nigeria was not benefitting from oil revenues as the NNPC delivers zero revenue but asks for extra funds to finance fuel subsidy.
“NNPC is not just delivering zero revenue. We are also as a federation has to give them more money. The current subsidy regime imposed on us has gotten to a point where NNPC revenue is exhausted and they have to come to the federation to ask for more money. It is a very difficult situation,” she said.