What do Nigerians think about proposed N5 fuel price increase?

A technical committee set up by the House Committee on Works has recommended in a National Roads Fund Bill that N5 be added to the price of petroleum to enable routine and periodic maintenance works on Nigerian roads. In addition, a fuel levy of N5 chargeable per litre on any volume of petrol and diesel products imported into the country and on locally refined petroleum products. Daily Trust asked opinions of some Nigerians on the move.
What do Nigerians think about proposed N5 fuel price increase?


Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas, 48, committee of Media and Public Affairs, House of Assembly, Abuja
I support this motion in as much as the money will be used judiciously to help create roads in the country. I am in support because as of today, several of our major roads are death traps. While the government is working on new ones, the old ones are getting spoilt by the day, so it is important that there should be a fund. It is a practice in some parts of the country and should be invoked here in Nigeria.

 

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Barrister Nneoma Albert-Benson, 32, female rights advocate, Abuja
Mentioning that N5 will be used for repairing roads is a bit laughable. The first question we should ask ourselves is, for instance, if it is approved, how are we going to monitor and evaluated it? How are we going to account for the fact that N5 has been used for federal roads? In fact, how have we been repairing our roads in the first place? A lot of our federal roads have been in a deplorable state. Who have we questioned? Now, if we pay our N5 per litre every time we purchase fuel for federal roads and we don’t get it done, who are we going to sue? Who are we going to ask questions? If we cannot put it in play and hold these people accountable, then there is no need. This money will go the same way every other thing has gone. They are basically saying we should donate N5 each time we buy fuel for federal roads. It has come to the point where we need to stop deceiving ourselves in this country and tell ourselves the truth. We need to be sure and check the people in power, if not they will get away with what they are doing and come up with something new. Public opinion really doesn’t matter sometimes.

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Moses Alexander, 40, Chairman, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Jabi Motor Park Unit, Abuja
This is not the time to increase a dime in anything in Nigeria. The House of Representatives that are bringing about all these ideas are obviously there for their own selfish reasons. What about all the money that they have been borrowing from the World Bank and other foreign countries? What are they using the loan for? We have not seen anything and now they are coming up with a ridiculous reason to add money to the already expensive fuel. And if they add it, when do they intend to remove the increase after the so-called roads have been fixed? We used to have toll gates which served the purpose of maintaining and repairing the roads and Obasanjo demolished the whole thing and today we are suffering from it.

 

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This increase is nothing but a scheme to put money in their pockets and diminish ours. Some of us have kids sitting at home because we cannot pay school fees. How do they think it makes us feel? The money they collected throughout last year is enough for them to award contracts to fix what needs to be fixed. If they were sincere with their plans they would make the toll gates functional again and use that money to award contracts to the Chinese to get the job done. We are fed up with the problems created by the government being heaped on innocent citizens. Some of us are willing to die for our rights. It is because we are sitting on our rights that they feel they can implement any law that is fitting for them.

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Babangida Bashir, 35, Commercial bus coordinator, Jabi, Abuja
People are suffering and in critical times. We have not seen any work done in the country, nor do we believe that they intend to if they increase the price of fuel. I am an educated man, but yet look at how life has treated us. We can’t deny some of the things that the administration has accomplished in terms of security. But we have been told that stolen loot has been or is being recovered, yet we have not seen any proof of it.

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Muhammad Wushishi, 30, Secretary of Kano Line Bus, Utako, Abuja
If they decide to increase the price of fuel, then it will be more than unfair to us since it will affect the price of everything. When they removed the fuel subsidy, we didn’t notice any difference. We don’t have passengers anymore and the price of car products and items are also ridiculously expensive. A tyre used to go for about N12, 000, but now it goes for up to N30, 000. The moment the fuel price goes up, they will increase the prices for passengers and soon the motor park will become close to deserted and we will have nothing to feed our families. As if the situation isn’t bad enough. If they are truly going to fix the roads with the money, why won’t they do it with the loot recovered from the corrupt officials? Where is that money going? Come 2019, how does the present government intend to campaign when they have done nothing to improve the lives of the less privileged in the country?

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