electoral bill

A group of civil society organisations in Nigeria has urged the federal government to repeal the laws establishing the Petroleum Equalisation Fund and the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) as a sign of its commitment to subsidy removal.

Led by the Nigeria Natural Resource Charter (NNRC), the CSOs said that the legislation can either be enacted separately or embedded in the petroleum industry bill.

Petrol prices rose from about N145 per litre to about N160 per litre across Nigeria, with the federal government saying that the increase was due to the deregulation of the downstream sector and the removal of subsidy on petrol.

‘While we await appropriate legislation, we require the government to clarify the role of the petroleum support fund in the new deregulation regime’, a statement signed by Programme Coordinator of NNRC, George-Ikoli, read.

‘Clarity is required about how that fund is being managed, whether the over-recovery sums were deposited there and how they are expected to be spent’.

On the issue of improving the immediate effects of the removal of petrol subsidy, the CSOs said the federal government should channel the revenues that would have been used for subsidy to improve the lives of impoverished Nigerians by investing in enablers of economic growth and development such as the development of rural roads, education, health services and agriculture.

Commending the federal government for providing initial regulation to support the deregulation efforts, the CSOs urged the government to do more in engaging the public on the potentials of a deregulated downstream sector.

Other CSOs that make up the consortium are Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), BudgIT, Connected Development (CODE), Media Initiative for Transparency in Extractive Industries (MITEI), Order Paper Advocacy Initiative, Women in Extractives (WiE), and Extractive 360.

Also part of the consortium are Centre for the Study of the Economies of Africa (CSEA), Youth Forum on Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (Youth Forum on EITI), Publish What You Pay (PWYP), Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), African Centre for Leadership Strategy and Development (CentreLSD), Centre for Development Support Initiatives (CEDSI), Centre for Transparency Advocacy (CTA) and Koyenum Immalah Foundation (KIF).

Photo source: Femi Adesina

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