A Review of the Nigerian Energy Industry

Mixed reactions trail fuel price increase in Abeokuta

03 January 2012, Sweetcrude, ABEOKUTA— Mixed reactions have trailed Sunday’s removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government in Abeokuta.

While some condemned the development and its timing, others commended government’s courage in separate interviews.

Those supporting the government, appreciated its courage in taking what they described as “steps that would move the nation forward in the long run.”

For instance, 39-year-old Mr. Adewale Azeez, a civil servant, said government should have made available some palliative measures to reduce the effects of the removal.

He added that while he was not opposed to the decision, he was however unhappy with the timing of the action.

“It is a bold and courageous effort to right the wrongs of the past, but the timing is absolutely poor and I will advise government to take a second look at it. I will also advise it to put a lot of measures in place to neutralise the anticipated hardship,” Azeez said.

Another resident of Abeokuta, Mr. Ishola Olaoluwa, was of the opinion that the decision would stabilise the economy and put the country in a strong financial position.

“A lot of money goes down the drain in the name of subsidy, so, government has acted like a rational economic agent by taking this step,” he said.

However, Temitope Sodeke, a freelance journalist, said the action was not in the best interest of the masses, pointing out that the government must listen to those it is ruling.

“We have had series of debates on this issue and we are not convinced that it is necessary for the government to remove the subsidy. The Nigerian economy is driven on the road and we all know what the implications will be when fuel is increased by more than 100 per cent. It is not right and they all in government know it,” he said.

Kunle Olayeni, who is a student, advised government to reverse the decision in the interest of the masses saying “if government can make some sacrifices by blocking some leakages that have been noticed, then we will save a lot of money to develop our infrastructure. But removing subsidy will put hardship on everyone.”

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