22 February 2017, Abuja – The House of Representatives in Abuja on Wednesday mandated its Committee on Gas Resources and Petroleum Downstream to investigate reasons for the scarcity and incessant hike in the price of cooking gas.
This followed a motion by Rep. Sergius Ogun (PDP-Edo) which was unanimously adopted by members through a voice vote.
Moving the motion, Ogun explained that the price of the cooking gas had been subjected to incessant hikes with the various players in the sector trading blames.
He explained that the players ended up doing nothing to stem the rise in price which was usually preceded by the scarcity of the product.
According to him, in 2016, the price of 2.5 kilogramme of gas increased from N2,700 to between N3, 500 and N4,000, depending on the vendor.
He said, “The same quantity of the product is currently selling between N5, 000 to N6,000.”
Ogun expressed worry that the lack of information as to the exact reason for the constant scarcity and hike in the price of the product did not go well for the nation.
This, he explained, had given the impression that the sector was completely unregulated.
He noted that citizens were at the mercy of the players in the cooking gas industry.
He said, “If the reason for the incessant hike in price and the scarcity of gas which is locally produced without any foreign exchange component is not investigated, the citizens will be further impoverished by hike in price.
“If not checked, the citizens can also be forced to adopt alternative but less healthy methods of cooking.”
In his contribution, the Deputy Speaker, Rep. Yusuf Lasun, blamed the hike in the price of cooking gas on the activities of the militants in the Niger Delta region.
He added that the issue went beyond the price of cooking gas but also had effects on the country’s economy.
Lasun, therefore, called for more efforts to address the restiveness in the region.
Rep. Bashir Babale (APC-Kano) in his contribution decried the hike in the price of cooking gas, kerosene and coal as the common man could not afford it.
Also, Rep. Aminu Shagari (APC-Sokoto) said that the parliament needed to do something as the hardship was becoming unbearable for Nigerians.