202 views | Emmanuel Anthony | September 4, 2020
Many Nigerians and groups have attacked President Muhammadu Buhari-led government over the Increase in fuel pump price.
On his part, a former Kogi State lawmaker, Dino Melaye, condemned President Muhammadu Buhari’s government for increasing the pump price of petrol to N151.56.The increment was approved by Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Wednesday.The new price has since stirred reactions from Nigerians and prominent individuals on social media.
Reacting, Melaye described the increase in petrol price during a pandemic as ”grossly insensitive and wicked by the government”
According to him, the development shows how the present administration is taking advantage of poor Nigerians.
Melaye on his Twitter page wrote: “It is grossly insensitive, wicked and deliberately callous for Government to increase pump price of petrol in a time like this.
“Men of good conscience will not watch the lives of poor Nigerians taking for granted with outrageous ignominy by a stationary Government.”
Also reacting, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), described as reprehensible the policy of hiking the rates of electricity supply and pump price of premium motor spirit simultaneously at a time that most Nigerians have lost their means of livelihood due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The rights group said the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has ended up inflicting pains, penury and agony on a massive scale on Nigerians through the recent rash of anti-people actions and policy implementation.
HURIWA, in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, on Thursday, said it was foolhardy for government to hike the purchasing prices of commodities when other nations of the World including even capitalist nation’s like the USA and UK are implementing different types of relief packages and funding aides to businesses in the formal and informal sectors of the economy.
HURIWA, therefore, called for protests by Nigerians to reject the alleged enslaving policies of the government.
The group says civil protests are necessary because all other organised trade unions and notable Civil Rights bodies may have been bribed to shut up or cajoled with threats of the Company and Allied Matters Act or may have skeletons in their pockets.
“Best bet is for Nigerians not to suffer and smile but to protest against these burdens imposed on the suffering and oppressed masses by the government which has transformed from a government that should govern to the new slave drivers,” the statement added.
“The oppressed masses should know that it is better to protest at the risks of arrest by the security forces than to be afraid, keep quiet and die in silence. Any government that has failed to provide funding assistance in this perilous period of health emergency but has instead chosen to overtax the people has lost its legitimacy to govern.”
Similarly, a Non-governmental organization, Afri-Goal Foundation, has declared the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration as a government that has no remorse for the hardship citizen are facing in the country.
The organization said that the recent fuel hike in the country has shown that the Buhari-led administration and the ruling All Progressives Congress are insensitive to the plights of Nigerians.
The NGO in its reaction on Thursday demanded that the government reverses the pump price to its original N130 and also reverse other anti-human taxes and tariffs increase.
According to the NGO, the latest increments should not have been thought of as it is coming at a time when the people are yet to get over the hardship and bite of COVID-19.
“While battling the impact of COVID-19, the government not only increase electricity tariff but also raised taxes and levies on the informal sector.
“This fuel hike appears to be a slap on the faces of Nigerians who are merely striving to provide for themselves what the government has failed to do,” the NGO said.
It, however, urged the government to empathize with Nigerians on what they are going through and put a halt to all policies and hikes that will further compound the woes of Nigerians.
Also reacting, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), charged President Muhammadu Buhari to resign.
NANS made the call in response to the hike in the pump price of petrol from N148 to N151.56k per litre by the Nigerian government.
A statement by Coordinator of NANS (Zone D), Kowe Odunayo Amos, described the increment as a punishment to Nigerians. Amos lamented that Buhari’s government was anti-people.
The statement reads, “We find it most embarrassing to read of the increment in the price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to N163.
“No doubt, this government has worsened all the crises it has inherited from the last administration. In fact, the Buhari government is a clear example that we the students must go back to our revolutionary days as we cannot continue to lament.
“As an association, we hereby declare that the Buhari government should all resign or immediately do the following; reverse petrol price to N97, and stop deregulation of the Oil Sector. Stop the devaluation of the Naira now. Increase budgetary allocations to education to 35%. Return to the old stamp duty price now.”
In his reaction, former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode condemned the increment of petrol pump price by the Nigerian government.
Fani-Kayode recalled warning Nigerians against voting Muhammadu Buhari in 2015. He said Nigerians should expect more from the Buhari-led government.
In a tweet, the former minister wrote: “2015: Fuel =N87, ECA =$2.5bn, Dollar =N200, Bag of rice =N8,500, External debt =$9.7b
“2020, Fuel =N150, ECA =$72m, Dollar =N475, Bag of rice =N25,000. External debt =$27bn.
“In the 2015 presidential campaign, I warned Nigerians that this would happen if Buhari was elected.
“I shouted it on the rooftops morning day and night but the people refused to listen. Instead, they insulted me and rejected GEJ. Let them continue with their insults and enjoy their plight. This is a sad testimony but worse of all is that there is far more to come. Sai Baba!”
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), former Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, and former Kaduna Senator, Shehu Sani, had in separate reactions condemned the fuel price hike.