Chuks Okocha in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) thursday cautioned the President Muhammadu Buhari administration and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to perish any contemplation of increasing pump price of petrol “from the already excruciating N145 per litre.”
In a statement signed by the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party said: “Our position is predicated on our unwavering stand as a party committed to the welfare of Nigerians, that any increase in fuel price will result in upsurge in cost of goods and services and worsen the biting hardship already being faced by Nigerians, who have been overburdened by the APC in the last four years.
“The PDP firmly holds that at a time like this, rather than mulling an increase in the price of such an essential commodity, a responsive leadership ought to be engaging stakeholders and seeking ways to achieve a reduction in the interest of the people.
“Our party insists that the price comparison being contemplated by the APC-controlled Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to warrant an increase, is untenable and further demonstrates that the APC is a party of selfish, unfeeling and insensitive individuals, who relish in inflicting pain and anguish on Nigerians for their selfish desires.”
Moreover, the party said in arguing that petrol price is cheap in Nigeria without also comparing our market and production variables as well as social and economic infrastructure with those obtainable in other countries, “explained that the APC-controlled NNPC is trying to play on the intelligence of Nigerians to pave way for further fleecing of our citizens.”
PDP said the action was anti-people, which can only come from leaders who do not have the mandate of the people, and as such, think that they are not answerable or accountable to the citizenry
According to party, “This is the same APC, which in 2015, promised to reduce fuel pump price, only for it to jerk it up from N87 per liter, stabilised by the PDP, to an exorbitant N145, from which it now seeks a further increase.
“Moreover, the APC-led federal government has no justification whatsoever to contemplate any increase in pump price of fuel when President Buhari has failed to recover the N9 trillion ($25 billion) oil money stolen under his watch through sleazy contracts as detailed in the leaked NNPC memo.
“President Buhari had also failed to recover the N1.1 trillion worth of crude oil allegedly stolen, using 18 unregistered companies, reportedly linked to APC interests.”
Against this background, PDP said: “It is therefore unacceptable that rather than recover the over N10 trillion stolen oil money and channel same to our domestic energy needs, the APC-led federal government is seeking to shift the burden of the humongous corruption in the NNPC, as confirmed by the new Group Managing Director, Mele Kyari, on our already deprived and impoverished compatriots.
“It is saddening that at a time Nigerians should have been enjoying the benefits of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s economic recovery plan, they are still being faced with apprehensions of more economic hardship under the hypocritical and unfeeling APC.”