How to solve fuel scarcity permanently – Ezekwesili

FILE PHOTO: Fuel Queue

A former minister of education, Oby Ezekwesili, has reacted to the current fuel scarcity and suggested a way to avoid it in future.

Ms. Ezekwesili, in a series of tweets on her verified Twitter handle, said total deregulation of the oil sector was the way to ensure a permanent solution to the crisis.

“Dear President .@MBuhari of @AsoRock It is not Rocket Science to FIX the Distortion in the Oil Sector. It is the underlying cause of the annual #FuelScarcity.

“It’s time to LET GO of the “politically beloved petroleum sector”. Sir, the SOLUTION is FULL DEREGULATION. Just. Do. It!” she said.

Opponents of full deregulation have argued that it would lead to price increase as government would no longer be able to fix the selling price of the product. In a full deregulated situation, marketers, governments and businesses could bring in petrol at their own cost and sell at any price they deem fit.

While urging the president to ensure good governance, the Bring Back Our Girls leader said ensuring full deregulation would bring about productive incentive to the nation’s oil and gas sector.

“P @MBuhari, unleash the Productive Incentive that FULL DEREGULATION would bring to the Oil & Gas Sector of our economy immediately. Severe the umbilical cord that has tied up the sector in the knots of Politics. Free that sector NOW. End the poor governance & suffering,” she added.

Ms. Ezekwesili added that “no matter the depth of complexity of any Problem in a country, there are options of Solutions that can be mobilized to resolve them. Problems persist these days not for want of ideas to
solve them but only because someone is FAILING to make a TOUGH CALL on the RIGHT SOLUTION.”

In his reaction to the scarcity, former vice president Atiku Abubakar said he sympathises with Nigerians over the crisis.

“My heart goes out to everyone struggling to see their friends and families during this season of celebration due to the #fuelscarcity and I am confident that as we unite as a nation we can find a solution to this crisis,” the former vice president said on Twitter Sunday morning.

Mr. Abubakar, who recently decamped to the opposition PDP from Nigeria’s ruling APC, did not however, suggest a way out of the recurring scandal.

The APC had on Saturday appealed to Nigerians to be patient with the federal government on the fuel crisis.

A statement issued by Bolaji Abdullahi, the party’s spokesperson, said the APC-led federal government was making efforts to address the situation.

“We empathise with Nigerians at this difficult time and appeal for patience with the federal government as it make efforts to improve the situation,” he said.

Many Nigerians have continued to react to the fuel crisis and Ms. Ezekwesili’s suggestion, with most criticising the president’s handling of the crisis.

Below are some of the reactions.


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  • princegab

    They think that we are in the 70s, we start going from whenever they wake up.

  • Okakuoofbenin

    Shut up madam please!!!! Was there no fuel scarcity during your time in government? Hypocrite!!!

    • Kelechi Chioma Onunka

      …. THIS IS A SUGGESTION TO A SOLVE A PROBLEM . Make a suggestion.

      • persona

        Suggestion is, let NNPC publish every marketer that has taken product and the corresponding station. Push same on social media and their website. They should deploy DPR staff to those stations and ensure that fuel if served from all pumps and at the right price.
        Ending any insurrection is not hard if the will is there.

      • marc umeh

        My suggestion ? Massive importation is bicycles !!! We need the exercise.

  • Ezomon Ehichioya

    Dear Madam, as at the time the PMB admin. jacked up price from N86.5k to N145 in 2016, to phase out subsidy for deregulation, stakeholders were calculating landing costs at between N120 and N125. Hence, there were speculations that pump price could come down to N128-N130 if crude oil price dipped; or N143 if crude price up-ticked. But what do we have today? Those Marketers that pressured fuel price increase to N145 are complaining about hike in international crude and refined prices. So, they cannot import fuel, which, of course, they stopped last year, leaving the NNPC the sole importer. With “partial” deregulation, they are clamouring for between N200 to N250 per litre. With full deregulation that you are preaching, that price could shut up to between N500 and N600 per litre. What if crude price reaches $80, $90 or above $100, as in the days of the Jonathan admin., won’t the Marketers be yearning for above N1,000 per litre? Is that what you want for Nigeria and Nigerians? The full deregulation you seek, no matter its pains, will not satisfy the Marketers. What they want is easy money: the return of subsidy, so they can manipulate the system to make billions of un-earned income at the expense of the people. In the name of full deregulation, governments gave licenses to private businesses to establish refineries. Have you seen one of such refineries anywhere in Nigeria? When Marketers sought reasonable foreign exchange to import fuel, they were asked to use the CBN window. And what did they do? They got the Forex and went straight to the Black Market to offload part or all to the Black Market, leaving out the fuel they got the Forex for in the first place. A drastic problem needs a drastic solution. Which is why you suggested full deregulation. But are our people honest enough for that scheme? Thanks and God bless.

    • persona

      The elites always want their lives on track even if others are stranded. The thinking of Oby is elitist and even as she likes to identify with the populace, she has her thinking pivoting towards maintaining status quo.
      Deregulation is not even a question: Why would marketers choose to fix the price of what they don’t import?
      Why would marketers because of lack of subsidy or desired margin forgo patriotism and choose such a sensitive time like this to punish everyone?
      The nation needs to identify with criminals in all facets and root them out.
      The role of NASS in not paying marketers is there but as we know, they have all gone on break till next year while everyone is working to make the fat salaries they spend…talk of #DoLittle

  • Mufu Ola

    Ekweksili tweeted about “good governance”. This woman was in govt for 8 solid years in d recent past.Now she’s a specialist in good government. Madam arm chair specialist.

    • marc umeh

      It is never too late to educate oneself . Maybe she got some education .

  • persona

    What we know:
    1- NNPC imports 90-100 percent of all petrol in the country
    2- NNPC stations sell between 142-143 per liter
    3- NNPC scaled up their responsibility as against folding when importers claimed they couldn’t import
    4- We consume between 25-35m liters per day and now, we are having 80m BUT we don’t have abundance of the product.
    5- Players in the industry claim that NNPC has indeed increased supply and they allude diversion.
    NNPC knows all marketers and filling stations they have supplied the daily 80m liters to, why is it hard to publish it on their websites and social media handles so Nigerians go to those stations and same are supervised by DPR?

    We should stop all these noise of deregulation because, the impact of an out of control pump price will worsen the lives of the average Nigerian. The elites always never want their lives and activities disrupted and will proffer anything to maintain status quo.
    Nigerians should realize that since NNPC and by extension, government is supplying the much needed product after a dip, the blame is with the marketers who want to dictate the price of what they don’t import.
    Nigerians, let us leave politics for once and rightly place the blame where it exist.

    • abodes_124

      Diesel is totally deregulated. most commercial vehicles and industry use diesel. can we not apply the same principle to petrol. Buhari has the best opportnity now. The current opposition were the champions of deregulation. the labour congress are in his pocket.. Do it Buhari. For Allah’s sake do it. totally deregulate!

      • persona

        AGO’s volume is low and its those who need it that buy it.
        PMS is not only for cars, SME’s use same to run their enterprises, consumption is higher.

        • Kelechi Chioma Onunka

          AGO is totally deregulated…….most of your food and materials are transported using AGO. All these argument that the masses suffer more in deregulation is a lie. When this government refused to utilise the opportunity to deregulate in April 2017 I knew this day will come.
          Who will get fuel at official rate …..when prices are controlled? The rich and powerful in society.The question is…..TO DEREGULATE OR SUSIDIZE? which one do you choose.

    • marc umeh

      That noise on deregulation is exactly what we need. There is no place on earth where price control has ever worked. Corruption is always the result . It is insane to advocate the continuation of a system that has failed miserably.

  • dami

    Full deregulation and a cash back / tax benefit to the most vulnerable…
    Mind you full deregulation doesn’t exist anywhere in the world, the market regulator usually sets a max price ceiling for the product; just like how the NCC set a max price of N50 per minute for mobile operators when they started ops and still do even today.

    • Izedomi Ohirein

      Low Cost of refineries licensing, import duties, costs of borrowing should be sufficient subsidy for petrol.
      Fuel subsidy is a scam. Price control don’t work.

  • thusspokez

    Mr. Abubakar, who recently decamped to the opposition PDP from Nigeria’s ruling APC, did not however, suggest a way out of the recurring scandal.

    Unlike Oby Ezekwesili, he can suggest any solution because like his comrade in the APC, his expertise in in looting public fund.

    I am confident that as we unite as a nation we can find a solution to this crisis

    What has unity of Nigeria got to do with fuel scarcity?