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The removal of subsidies from petroleum products in Nigeria by the federal government on Wednesday, May 11 has been generating mixed reactions across Nigeria.

While many are opposed to the decision by the government, many others are in support of the decision, saying it is the way to go.

Since the announcement of the policy by the Muhammadu Buhari administration, there have been arguments and counter arguments by various organisations on the advantages or disadvantages of the policy.

President Buhari has a duty to ensure the fuel subsidy removal is to beneficial to Nigeria and Nigerians

Joining the fray is a group known as ‘Vanguard for Sustainable Palliatives in Petroleum Sector’ led by Mr Olawunmi Olarewaju.

The group has outlined eight ways in which the Buhari government can ensure the fuel subsidy removal and indeed, the liberalisation of the downstream sector is successful.

1. Set up a task force to monitor possible forex manipulation. The team should focus attention on every stage forex transaction zeroing on the beneficiaries. The team should also be able to monitor transaction dealers directly from pre-shipment to post shipment.

2. The NNPC should intensify supply in the short-run so that the cabal will not be given room to frustrate the policy. It is our belief that prices will recede after the initial panic. We have seen that happened in the diesel market.

3. Government should monitor every dollar that comes in or go out of Nigeria.

4. The CBN, either officially of unofficially, should increase the sale of dollars to petroleum product importers at an exchange rate that is not above N300/$. We believe marketers can still make profit at this rate.

5. Government should use state apparatus to stop the resurgence of insurgence in the Niger Delta to stabilise oil production.

6. Government should not hesitate to seek help, locally and internationally, to curtail the fall of the naira, which we believe is being manipulated by round trippers who will soon be out of business.

7. Government should promote policies that could boost local production capacity and diversify sources of foreign earnings.

8. Government should not give in to distraction as this is a major weapon in the hands of those that are determined to frustrate this administration and prevent it from succeeding.
8:02 PM

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