APC accuses FG of intention to increase fuel price

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) has accused the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led Federal Government of acting out a clandestine script to increase fuel prices.

Lai Mohammed
Lai Mohammed, APC

It said the nation-wide fuel scarcity may have been induced to make higher fuel prices a fait accompli for Nigerians.

In a statement issued in Lagos yesterday by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the fact that the scarcity has persisted despite the claims and counter-claims by the government and the oil markers, and the measures purportedly taken by the government to ameliorate the situation, is the clearest indication of official deception.

“The more fuel trucks the government claims to have sent to major cities to ease the scarcity, the more difficult it is for Nigerians to obtain the product. This is an old trick and Nigerians should not be hoodwinked into believing there will be no increase in fuel prices.

The only deterrent is to let the government know Nigerians will resist any price hike.

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“The truth is that with the elections approaching, the PDP-led Federal Government is desperately seeking all possible avenues to raise funds for its usual electoral shenanigans, and increasing fuel prices has always been an attractive option to the government, not minding what the impact will be on the same people it has impoverished since 1999,’’ it said.

APC said the lingering scarcity has already forced many Nigerians to pay as much as 120 Naira per litre of fuel, which is exactly as the FG wants it to be.

“The next refrain from the government will be that only higher prices will guarantee the availability of the product, and that many marketers are unwilling to import the product because of low profit margin. We urge Nigerians not to swallow this bait,’’ the party said.

It commended the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) for its timely warning against any plan to hike fuel prices, saying the Jonathan Administration’s assurances that fuel prices would not be increased are not worth anything because the government is credibility-deficient.

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“The big deception of 2012, when the government slammed a massive price hike on Nigerians on New Year’s day despite assurances to the contrary, is still too fresh in the memories of Nigerians. The same people who inflicted that pain on Nigerians are still in charge, so no one should trust them,” APC warned.

The Deputy National Chairman of the Petrol Tankers Drivers (PTD) Branch of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), NNPC, Apata, Ibadan, Comrade Salimon Oladiti, has accused the Federal Government of insincerity on the reason for the fuel scarcity.

Oladiti said it was a method by the government to increase fuel pump prices.

The NUPENG spoke yesterday at the Oyo State House of Assembly complex, Secretariat, Ibadan.

“We in the Labour have been trying our possible best to mount pressure on the Federal Government. Now if you want to buy petrol in Lagos now from private depot, it is N100, whereas they are just sending little quantity to NNPC depot. That is why we are experiencing all this things. What the Minister of Petroleum said about marketers diverting of fuel was a total lie.

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”How many times will they continue to say that we are the cause of this crisis? When the product is available, did you experience or hear from them that somebody is diverting the fuel, or that somebody is going on leave and all that? All her excuses are nonsense. If someone is not productive, then the President of the day should replace him with somebody that is ready to do the job, rather than playing politics with issues every time.”

He urged all Nigerians to mount pressure on the Federal Government to give a reasonable explanation on the fuel scarcity.

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