President Muhammadu Buhari has emphasized that there would be no going back on petrol subsidy removal.
He added that fixing or subsidising the prices of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS)-petrol would result to negative consequences on the economy.
The President who was duly represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo made this statement on Monday while declaring open a 2-day First Year Ministerial Performance Review Retreat at the State House Conference Centre, Abuja.
He added that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a massive reduction in the funds available to finance the nations’ budget and also severely hampered government’s capacity.
President Buhari added that the deregulation is one of the the steps the government took at the beginning of the crisis in March when oil prices collapsed at the height of the global lockdown.
“There are several negative consequences if the government should even attempt to go back to the business of fixing or subsidising PMS prices.
“First of all, it would mean a return to the costly subsidy regime; today we have 60 per cent less revenues; we just cannot afford the cost.
“The second danger is the potential return of fuel queues – which has, thankfully, become a thing of the past under this administration.
“Nigerians no longer have to endure long queues just to buy petrol, often at highly inflated prices; also, as I hinted earlier, there is no provision for fuel subsidy in the revised 2020 budget.
“Simply because we are not able to afford it, if reasonable provisions must be made for health, education and other social services,’’ he said.