APC Professionals Forum lambasts oil marketers for hoarding, backs Tinubu on subsidy saga

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ALL Progressives Congress Professionals Forum (APC-PF) has berated oil marketers for taking advantage of the ‘subsidy is gone‘ declaration by President Bola Tinubu to hoard fuel and create hardship for Nigerians within the first few days of the new administration.

The body described, in a statement by the chairman of its committee on Energy and Infrastructure Mohammed Babagana as an act of sabotage that should be condemned by all Nigerians who want the best for the country.

It urged agencies saddled with ensuring fuel supplies nationwide to live up to their responsibilities.

“It is a known fact that the former administration had laid the groundwork for the removal of fuel subsidy especially as the budget for it was meant to last till June this year.

“So, what President Bola Tinubu simply did at his inauguration was to serve notice that ‘fuel subsidy is gone’ and to give an insight into how his administration would channel funds that should ordinarily be used for the subsidy to other areas from the terminal date of the subsidy regime.

“But we are shocked that oil marketers have capitalised on the situation to hoard the product in many parts of the country, thereby triggering panic buying. This hasty action amounts to economic sabotage especially as there are assurances of enough stock of fuel.

“We see nothing wrong in the president’s declaration as it is in line with what he said in the run-up to the 2023 Presidential election at a luncheon with business owners in Lagos, during which we recalled him saying Nigeria would not continue to subsidise fuel consumption in neighbouring countries.

“Indeed it has come to light through the former finance minister Zainab Ahmed that the country had been spending N6.4 trillion annually on fuel subsidy and has already spent N3.36 trillion this year alone.

“We are convinced that a government headed by a professional of the calibre of President Tinubu can do a lot with the trillions of naira that would be saved from stopping subsidy payment, the statement added.