The Federal Government has saved approximately N1.45 trillion between June and September from the removal of petrol subsidy, according to FAAC allocation records.
According to figures from the obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and Nigeria’s Governors Forum (NGF) websites, monthly contributions to the Non-Oil Revenue (Savings) account totalled N696.93 billion in June, N389.7 billion in July, N71 billion in August, and N289 billion in September.
President Bola Tinubu declared the end of the subsidy in May 2023. Prior to this, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd spent N1.828 trillion on subsidies from January to May 2023, 55 percent higher than the same period in 2022.
Tinubu announced that N1 trillion was saved in June and July alone, which will now be used for intervention programmes benefiting families. He said “In a little over two months, we have saved over a trillion Naira that would have been squandered on the unproductive fuel subsidy, which only benefitted smugglers and fraudsters”.
Apparently, Trade Union Congress (TUC) President, Festus Osifo, questioned the Government’s claim of saving N1 trillion after the subsidy removal, urging transparency in utilising the funds.
Osifo expressed that there’s no need for further borrowing and that the Government should use part of the saved money for the benefit of Nigerians.
Meanwhile, Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, acknowledged substantial savings from the subsidy removal, and stated that funds were provided to state governments to ease the policy’s impact on citizens. The exact amount wasn’t disclosed.
He said, “So much money has been saved since the removal of the subsidy. Some of the money that has been saved has been given to the States.
“Mr. President believes that State governments are closer to the people than federal ones. That is why the administration has been passing funds through the governors to provide palliatives to cushion the effects of the subsidy removal.
“I cannot give the exact figure right now, because it is an ongoing exercise”, he stated
On the theme of theme of the Retreat, “Creating a Resilient Economic through Diversification of the Nation’s Revenue”, the Minister commended the choice, stressing that it was suitable. Edun also noted that the retreat clearly outlined the urgent need to diversify the nation’s economy.
In an opening remark, Gov. Sheriff Oborevwori, of Delta State, tasked the Federal Government to muster the political will by putting necessary policy and institutional framework in place to diversify the nation’s economy.
The governor, represented by his Deputy, Sir Monday Onyeme, said that there was no magic wand to diversify the nation’s economy from over dependence on revenue from crude oil unless concerted efforts were made in other key sectors.
He noted that the diversification of the nation’s economy must go beyond mere rhetoric to concrete measurable steps by facilitating the non-oil exports such as agricultural products, manufactured goods and services as well as the expansion of the revenue base.