The nations main opposition party, People Democratic Party, PDP, has announced plans to carefully study the procedures adopted by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration on the deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum industry.
According to the party if market forces are allowed to determine the prices of petroleum products, Nigerians would pay no more than N70 per litre of fuel.
Addressing journalist at its secretariat in Abuja, National Publicity Secretary of the party Kola Ologbondiyan explained that the party came up with this decision to ensure that the process is not manipulated against the interest of the ordinary Nigerians.
His statement reads, “The PDP invites the federal government to immediately declare and surrender the proceeds of the overcharges on pump price of fuel price since the fall in oil price in the international market and direct such to the benefit of Nigerians.
“The PDP also call on the federal government to immediately recover the over N14 trillion exposed to have been stolen in the oil sector in the last five years of the All Progressives Congress, APC, administration, and direct same to the development of the oil and gas sector.
“Our party holds that if the stolen N14 trillion, made up of alleged N9 trillion detailed in the leaked NNPC memo as well as alleged diversions of subsidy funds, is recovered and injected into our economy, such will revamp our refineries, push prices further down and create more jobs and employment opportunities for our citizens.
“Nigerians are aware that prior to his emergence as the President, President Muhammadu Buhari had declared fuel subsidy a fraud, but five years after, the government which he heads, watched over a subsidy regime that has been exposed to be replete with corruption.
“Our party insists that the federal government should not use the deregulation process to sweep the issues of overcharge in the pump price of fuel as well as allegations of corruption in its subsidy regime, under the carpet.
“The PDP therefore calls in the National Assembly to immediately set up an ad hoc committee to investigate the sleazes in the oil subsidy regime in the last five years and clean up the oil and gas sector so as to ensure a transparent deregulation in the industry.
The federal government had on Thursday last week proceeded with the full deregulationofor the downstream Petroleum sector with the removal of existing cap on fuel prices.
With the new development marketers would now be allowed to import products and sell prevailing market prices, without the usual price band set by relevant regulatory agency even as the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA, noted that hence forthrices would be fully determined by market forced.