Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has kicked against the federal government’s decision to remove fuel subsidy.
The group expressed that the move should be suspended, because the regime of the President, Muhammadu Buhari, did not provide the required factors for subsidy removal.
Speaking on the issue, the National Public Relations Officer, IPMAN Chief Ukadike Chinedu, stated that though the association lauded Buhari for leaving the fuel subsidy on till he hands over, his regime, there is no provision for the effect of the decision.
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“IPMAN commends the administration of President Buhari for considering not to remove fuel subsidy before handing over on May 29, 2023. As the National PRO of IPMAN, we are in support of the fact that the current administration should not remove subsidy.
“This is because the factors that should necessitate the removal of subsidy have not been put in place by this outgoing administration. Our obsolete refineries should work and our pipelines should be repaired in order to move petroleum products from riverine areas to dry lands.
“From there, marketers can be able to load products as quickly as possible to their filling stations without traveling long distances. These are the factors that will aid the smooth transition to a no-subsidy regime,” Ukadike stated.
He explained that when refineries work and the Dangote Refinery comes on stream, it would checkmate the importation of petroleum products and guide against exorbitant prices.
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“As independent petroleum marketers, we are the ones who feel the impact on the masses most. So the haste for subsidy removal by the outgoing administration will cause unnecessary hardship and tough times for the incoming administration.
“So our position as IPMAN is that the issue of subsidy removal should be suspended and the incoming administration should be allowed to handle it,” he stated.
Ukadike said IPMAN had earlier discussed with the President-elect, Bola Tinubu, as marketers made it clear that “he (Tinubu) should ensure the provision of factors that will necessitate a smooth transition to the no-subsidy regime.”
The IPMAN official added, “All of us agreed that it must be put in place before subsidy is removed. Also, his excellency, represented by Adams Oshiomhole, agreed with us, and assured us that the incoming administration will look at it.”
On the provision of palliatives to cushion the impact of subsidy removal, he stated that this was not the main problem of marketers.
“We acknowledge the issue of palliatives by the Federal Government, but it is not our main problem. Our main problem is for the government to ensure that the refineries are working and the pipelines are restored,” Ukadike stated.
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