Subsidy: FG pays N46.76b to verified petroleum marketers
In line with the commitment of the Goodluck Jonathan administration to ensure transparency and accountability in the management of fuel subsidy payments, the Federal Ministry of Finance has so far released N46,764,191,448.16 to pay oil marketers whose claims have gone through the verification process.
A breakdown of the figure showed that while N17,297,152,579.25 was paid to 11 marketers in April, another N29,467,038,868.91 was disbursed to 19 firms in the following month, bringing total to 46,764,191,448.16.
The figure, when added to payments made before then, shows that Abuja has so far paid N287,351,770,696.16 to verified marketers this year.
Also, the Federal Government has been able to reduce public spending on oil subsidy payments from N2.2 trillion in 2011 to N971 billion last year, representing a reduction of over N1.2 trillion or 56 per cent.
Speaking on the issue, the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala recalled the background to the high profile issue which generated immense public concern.
“In 2011, there was a huge public outcry. As a result, this administration has worked hard to clean up the process of subsidy payments. In response the ministry set up the Aig-Imoukhuede committee which investigated the subsidy payments. The committee was later elevated to a Presidential Committee by Mr President.
“We also hired new auditors and we put in place different checks and balances. As a result, last year, we brought subsidy payment down to about N950 billion, and we expect that this year, we will pay about N971 billion.
“I believe this is a huge achievement for which the Jonathan administration deserves some credit, something that should make Nigerians proud of their government,” she added.