Festus Keyamo (SAN) the director, strategic communications of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign organisation has said that the People Democratic Party (PDP)’s flag bearer, Atiku Abubakar’s recent promise to crash fuel price to N97 per litre is laughable.
Keyamo, in a statement published on Monday, November 5, and made available to Legit.ng said that with the state of the world economy presently, there is no way the price is possible.
The statement read: “Our attention has been drawn to a statement credited to the PDP a few days ago that its presidential candidate, H.E. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar will, if elected president, crash the pump price of petrol to N97 per litre.
“However, there is no better evidence of desperation and phantom promises by the main opposition’s candidate than this statement.
“At today’s international price of gasoline, no supplier will ever contemplate any scheme that will deliver products at such ridiculous price. Those in the sector reading this must be having a good laugh at the opposition.
“A simple check at the international prices will show that even at the world market where gasoline is procured, it will cost not less than N158 to procure a litre of crude oil.
“When you add the cost of refining, plus freight, finance and port charges (premium), there is no magic that one would employ to supply the finished product at N145 a litre. Presently, the landing cost of the product in Nigeria hovers around N205 per litre.
“The claim by Alhaji Atiku Abubakar is opportunism of the highest order. Nigerians are aware that higher crude oil prices will translate to higher government revenues and a prudent administration will convert the resources to the benefit of the common man.
“This is exactly what President Muhammadu Buhari has done since he mounted the saddle in 2015. The President has worked out a transparent system whereby the whole subsidy regime and scam has been totally eliminated. There is no cash incentive or payment again to middlemen.
In line with the President’s transparent policy, we lay bare the present system as follows:
1. What obtained under the past government was the ABUSE of the subsidy regime.
2. The system under the past Government was that independent marketers and all sort of persons were allowed to import petroleum products on their own, declare non-existent volumes of these products and get paid for these non-existent volumes.
3. In addition, government would then pay them cash for the “loses” (subsidy) in selling at fixed market price.
4. Under this old system, more than N3 trillion was lost.
5. However, when these independent marketers could no longer bring in products due to high prices of crude and make profit at the fixed market price of N145 to a litre, President Buhari refused to further raise the price of petroleum products beyond the N145 per litre.
“The President was also not prepared to go back to the subsidy regime. Therefore, President Buhari stopped the scam of overblown volumes and subsidy payments to middlemen.”