We can't use tax from poor farmers, herdsmen to subsidize fuel – Presidency

With regards to the independence day speech by President Mohammadu Buhari which has generated several reactions, the presidency has decided to clear airs on the president’s motive in making such statement.

President Buhari in his speech, said it would make no sense for petrol to sell at a lesser price compared to Saudi Arabia and other neighboring countries.

This has generated several reactions with many calling on the president to consider the minimum income, that is, the minimum wages of the said Saudi Arabia and Nigeria.

Reacting to this on channels television’s politics today, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said it would be unfair that the farmer, herders and low-level people in the society pay their tax and the tax is taken from them to subsidise the lifestyle of our city urban dwellers.

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Speaking further, Shehu said, “Is it fair that the taxpayers’ money…how many Nigerians have cars anyway? How many of them run generators in their homes that they need this fuel for?

“Is it fair that the farmer, herders and low-level people in the society that the taxpayer money is taken from them are subsidising the lifestyle of our city urban dwellers? The President is just trying to be as practical on these matters as possible.

The SSA also compared the technological cost of producing a barrel of petrol between the two countries, stating that the cost of producing a barrel of petrol in Saudi Arabia is 3 times lesser than in Nigeria.

He further said; “So Saudi Arabia is important in this discussion because what is the technological cost of producing a barrel of oil in Saudi Arabia?

“It’s not more than a quarter of what we spend here and yet you see them charging more than Nigeria. How much comes to Nigeria when you look at our technical cost?”

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