Buhari Campaign Challenges PDP, Atiku on Petrol Price

Muhammadu Buhari

Puts landing cost of fuel at N205 per litre

Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja

The Muhammadu Buhari Campaign Organisation has asked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, to tell Nigerians how they intend to bring down the pump price of petrol from N145 to N97 per litre without resorting to subsidy.

The organisation said from the facts at its disposal, landing cost of Premium Motor Spirit (popularly known as petrol) hovered around N205 per litre, saying such an ambitious claim by Atiku to crash petrol price could only mean a return to full-blown subsidy payment with its attendant fraud.

In a statement on Tuesday by its Director, Strategic Communications, Mr. Festus Keyamo (SAN), the campaign said Nigerians would like to know details of the transparent system Atiku intends to adopt to achieve the crash in petrol price.

The Buhari campaign team said that it had become necessary for Nigerians to interrogate Atiku further in order for him to lay bare before them the template he had developed to crash the price of petrol.

“This is not a game of tricks or hide-and-seek. He must come clean. Nigerians await the details of the transparent system Atiku Abubakar intends to adopt that would eliminate fraudulent cash payments to middlemen and make the product available at all times,” it said.

The PDP had said that its presidential candidate, Atiku, had worked out a pricing template that would immediately crash the pump price of petrol in the country.

The party also said it was opposed to the increase in the official prices of diesel and kerosene, explaining that it would bring more pressure on the finances of already impoverished citizens since most businesses and homes across the country heavily depended on the products for sustenance.

The opposition party’s spokesman, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, said the party was in high level talks with top international players in the oil and gas industry, adding that its engagements had shown that the appropriate pump price of fuel in the Nigerian market ought to be around N87 to N90 per litre.

But the Buhari campaign said at today’s international price of gasoline, no supplier would ever contemplate any scheme that would deliver products at N87, adding that those who knew the true situation must be having a good laugh at the opposition.

The campaign said from available facts, the actual landing cost of petrol was N205 per litre.

It explained, “A simple check at the international prices will show that even at the world market where gasoline is procured, it will cost not less than N158 to procure a litre of crude oil.

“When you add the cost of refining, plus freight, finance and port charges (premium), there is no magic that one would employ to supply the finished product at N145 a litre. Presently, the landing cost of the product in Nigeria hovers around N205 per litre.”

The Buhari campaign described the claim by Atiku as opportunism of the highest order and said Buhari had worked out a transparent system whereby the whole subsidy regime had been totally eliminated with no cash incentive or payment again to middlemen.