The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, stated that the Federal Government removed subsidy on petrol because some cabals which he failed to identify hide under the subsidy to perpetrate fraud.
According to the NNPC boss, over N10tn was spent on fuel subsidy between 2006 and 2020 without significant impact on the Nigerian masses. The beneficiaries of the fuel subsidy regime were the marketers who smuggled the subsidised product to neighbouring countries.
He further explained that the marketers made more profits with fake documents to collect subsidy for fuel they never imported.
Speaking on Liberty FM, Kaduna during Hausa programme monitored on Saturday, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC said fuel subsidy was the root of all the atrocities and frauds in the Oil Sector. Government therefore removed the subsidy with a plan to reinvest on projects that will have direct impact on the masses.
The GMD said that the government has been paying subsidy on petrol since the inception to make it cheaper for Nigerians to buy below the cost price. But in reality, the masses are not the beneficiaries. First, the masses are not the owners of the exotic cars buying fuel, owning the filling stations and doing the oil business.
He revealed that the Federal Government have spent over N10tn on fuel subsidy. Apart from that. There is also subsidy on foreign currencies which puts fuel subsidy within the period at N14tn to N15tn.
“What was happening with the subsidy is that, some marketers were smuggling fuel to other neighbouring countries because it was cheaper in Nigeria due to the subsidy.
“Another one is those who use fake documents and bring to government to collect subsidy for fuel they never imported and the previous government was paying them.
He added that it was not the masses of Nigeria that were enjoying this subsidy except some cabals, who are rich and powerful. The cabal enriched themselves to the detriment of the masses who were the primary target of the subsidy.