April 16, 2024

Oyedele, Tinubu Tax Adviser, recommends sales of PH, Warri, Kaduna refineries due to inefficiencies, warns FG may pay subsidy on refined product to drop prices

Taiwo Oyedele, Chairman, Presidential Committee on Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms

 

 

Oredola Adeola

 

Taiwo Oyedele, Chairman of the Presidential Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms Committee, has called for the complete sales of the state-owned refineries due to inefficiencies that have characterized the facilities over time, insisting that if the refineries were working optimally, one liter of petrol will be the most expensive in the world.

 

He added that the Federal Government may be paying subsidy on every petroleum product produced in local refineries to drop the price.

 

 

Oyedele made this known in his presentation at The Platform’s Independence Anniversary event, held in Lagos on Monday, while speaking on the topic: Making Nigeria the Springboard for Africa We Want, through Sound Economic Policies and Responsible Citizenship.

 

The chairman of the Presidential Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms Committee said that Nigerians should pray that the country’s refineries do not work.

 

According to him, should Nigerian refineries produce petroleum (at its present status), inefficiencies in the management might make a litre of petrol the most expensive in the world.

 

He said, “Nigerians would say if only our refineries were working, then we’ll be fine. Nothing can be farther from the truth than that.

 

“Nigerians should come together and say please make sure that our refineries don’t work, we should sell them.

 

“If Nigerian refineries process crude oil unless we deal with our inefficiency, one litre of petrol will be the most expensive in the world. You would have succeeded in replacing the subsidy at the pump with the subsidy of the refineries.

 

“The National Assembly said we have spent over N10tn maintaining our refineries even when they have not produced anything,” Oyedele added.

 

“The time that the refineries were producing, Mele Kyari, Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, said ‘We have to shut down the one that we are producing because the through crude of $100 produced a refined product of $97, without added overhead and others.”

 

 Recently, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil) during an inspection tour of the rehabilitation work progress at the Port Harcourt Refining Company (PHRC) Ltd. said that the refinery will come on board by December 2023, while Warri refinery will come on stream by the end of the first quarter of 2024, and Kaduna will also come on board towards the end of 2024.

 

 

Oyedele in his address further stated that those directly impacted by the removal of petrol subsidy are not people in the rural areas but the urban poor including the classes of people using imported vehicles, artisans, and their apprentices and families who rely on them for livelihood.

 

He said, “Life has become impossible for the urban poor including the middle class who use imported and used vehicles, vulcanizer, mechanic, appreciates and the family that they support.

 

“We all agree that the removal of subsidy was a necessary policy, but Nigerians must respond in a way that is robust to ease the pain of the removal on the people.

 

“We have to make sure that every single Naira taken from a subsidy is spent 100 percent on the people directly impacted or spent in places where it would make the most impact. Hence the need for honest data.

 

“The most vulnerable people affected by the petrol subsidy removal are not the villagers, whose contact with energy is near zero. They produce the food they eat and do not use generators, not vehicles. Many villages in Nigeria, have no idea that the petrol subsidy has been removed.

 

“The people affected by the petrol subsidy removal are the urban poor who pay house rents, transportation, and other basic needs.

 

Chairman of the Presidential Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms Committee therefore charged the Federal Government to ensure that policies and palliatives are targeted at the vulnerable urban poor, and used to address the problems where it is most painful.