HomeNewsTinubu: I Stopped Paying Fuel Subsidy To Save Nigeria Going Broke

Tinubu: I Stopped Paying Fuel Subsidy To Save Nigeria Going Broke

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has justified his administration’s stopping the payment on fuel subsidy, saying the move, unpopular to citizens, became necessary to save the country from going broke and bankrupt.

Tinubu had announced his government would no more pay subsidy on petrol on May 29, when delivering his inaugural speech.

“Subsidy is gone,” he announced to shocked Nigerians, and sent prices of commodities skyrocketing.

However, speaking as one of the panelists at the ongoing World Economic Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia this morning, Tinubu justified the petrol subsidy removal, maintaining that it was needed to reset the economy.

The World Economic Forum meeting focused on Global Collaboration, Growth and Energy for Development

Tinubu, who has since returned to Nigeria, told the international audience: “For Nigeria, we are immensely consistent with belief that the economic collaboration and inclusiveness is necessary to engender stability in the rest of the world.

“Concerning the question of the subsidy removal, there is no doubt that it was a necessary action for my country not to go bankrupt, to reset the economy and pathway to growth.”

He admitted the difficulty associated with his decision to jettison the policy which has allowed Nigerians to purchase petrol at cheaper rates for years but said that he was convinced it was in the best interest of the people.

He said: “It is going to be difficult, but the hallmark of leadership is taking difficult decision at the time it ought to be taken decisively. That was necessary for the country. Yes, there will be blowback, there is expectation that the difficulty in it will be felt by greater number of the people, but once I believe it is their interest that is the focus of the government, it is easier to manage and explain the difficulties.

“Along the line, there is a parallel arrangement to really cushion the effect of the subsidy removal on the vulnerable population of the country. We share the pain across board, we cannot but include those who are vulnerable.

“Luckily, we have a very vibrant youthful population interested in discoveries by themselves and they are highly ready for technology, good education committed to growth. We are able to manage that and partition the economic drawback and the fallout of subsidy removal.”

According to him, the petrol subsidy removal equally engendered accountability, transparency and fiscal discipline for the country.

At the panel session of the WEF in Riyadh, Tinubu equally defended the exchange rate unification.

Tinubu said: “The currency management was necessary equally to remove the artificial elements of value in our currency. Let our local currency find its level and compete with the rest of the world currency and remove arbitrage, corruption and opaqueness.

“That we did at the same time. That is two engine problem in a very template situation for the government, but we are able to manage that turbulence because we are prepared for inclusivity in governance and rapid communication with the public to really see what is necessary and what you must do.”

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