President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday expressed regrets concerning the long queues at petrol stations across the country and apologized to Nigerians.
The president sent words of apology to the country as he presented the 2016 budget to a joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja. His 2016 budget which was just presented expects oil-related revenues to yield N820 billion.
He stated that the government was making efforts to terminate the shortages.
His statement reads:
Government profoundly apologizes to Nigerians for this prolonged hardship and misery.
It is as a result of market speculators and resistance to change by some stakeholders.
Government is working very hard to end these shortages and to bring fuel to the pumps all over the country,’’.
He noted that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had been directed to explore alternative funding models to help government carry out its obligations in Joint Ventures (JVs) and deep offshore fields.
The president expressed hopefulness and confidence in the measure, saying that they could be achieved and would cut-down the responsibility that the traditional cash calls had imposed on the budget.
He went on to say that it would also cut-down the burden on cash flows and contribute towards strengthening or propping up the country’s national reserves.
He added that his administration would not forget to concentrate and pay particular attention to the need to restructure the oil and gas sector which had been damaged and scarred by corruption and inefficiency.
Based on his statement, he has given the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) an order to adjust its pricing template to reflect competitive and market driven components.
In his words:
We believe this can lower input costs and attain efficiency savings that will enable PPPRA to keep the selling price for all marketers of petrol at N87 per litre for now,’’.