By Sahelian Times
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has said if fuel subsidy is not removed, 35 out of the 36 states may not be able to salaries in 2022.
El-Rufai, who spoke on Tuesday in Abuja, at the presentation of the World Bank Nigeria Development Update, November 2021, said to avoid such situation, governors are ready to support the elimination of fuel subsidy regime.
He said if the regime of fuel subsidy was not eliminated, 35 out of the 36 states of the federation may not be able to pay salaries in 2022.
El-Rufai said kerosene which matters most to the masses had been regulated without any hitches, while diesel which was most important to transporters had also been regulated for a long time.
“This hullabaloo about petrol is something that we must as a country have a conversation and agree that it has to end.”
“We cannot continue to provide petroleum to our neighbouring countries, which is what we are doing. Why are we doing this? For whom are we doing it? Who is the beneficiary? Which is the cabal that is the beneficiary of this and why should they hold this country to ransom and bankrupt the Nigerian economy?
“Right now, we are losing N250 billion a month and this has to end. State governments are committed to supporting the Federal Government on this.
“We do our bit, engage stakeholders and put the facts on the table so that everyone understands the danger the country is in if the subsidy continues, as well as the benefits that will accrue.
“Not only to the budgets of the states and their capacity to deliver social services, but also what will go directly to the pockets of the poorest Nigerians that will bear the brunt of any withdrawal of subsidy.
“This is the position of the state governments and we met just a few days ago to take this position.”
El-Rufai said the governors saw the dangers in continuing on the path of petroleum subsidy and support policy measures needed to improve the fiscal situation, such as price stability.
This, he said, was by ensuring that there was alignment of the exchange rate and good coordination between fiscal and monetary policy. (NAN)