Subsidy Removal: Buhari, APC Owe Jonathan Apology, Says Lawmaker


By Damilola Oyedele

For inciting protests against the removal of fuel subsidy in 2012 on the grounds that it was an anti-people policy, and now turning around to remove the same subsidy, President Muhammadu Buhari and the members of the All Progressives Congress have been told that they owe former President Goodluck Jonathan an apology.

This is the position of the lawmaker representing Ukwa Federal Constituency of Abia state in the House of Representatives, Hon. Uzoma Nkem-Abonta (PDP), who accused Buhari of having taken a destructive position in 2012 without reasoning and economic analysis.

Abonta however expressed his support for the removal, but called for a total deregulation of the sector, passage and implementation of the Petroleum Industry Bill.

Several members of the opposition party have already berated the Buhari administration for campaigning with promises that he would not increase the price of fuel, and not keeping the promise.

Speaking with THISDAY, Abonta also accused the seventh House of Representatives of playing the script of those who wanted Jonathan to fail with the resolution against the removal in 2012.

“They occupied Nigeria in 2012. What changed between 2012 and now causing the increase? That means they were ignorant and lacked political reasoning. The criticized Jonathan out of trying to condemn him. Those who surround him (Buhari) misled Nigerians using the Labour movement. Lai Mohammed was one of those who occupied Nigeria. What would he say now?” Abonta said.

“I hope the eighth assembly would do the right thing and let the removal stay, although those at the helm now all canvassed against it, now they should tell Nigerians sorry,” he added.

Abonta, who is also the Chairman of the Committee on Public Petitions, advised that the money saved from the removal of subsidy should be invested through a clear economic agenda, which he noted the current government lacks.

He urged Buhari to consult those who ran the economy under President Jonathan, particularly Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, whose polices managed to keep the dollar at N160 for several years.