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Economy & Politics

Presidency questions how many Nigerians have cars, generators, defends fuel price hike

The President’s aide questioned how many Nigerians have cars or generators in their homes that will require fuel.

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Presidency questions how many Nigerians have cars, generators, defends fuel price hike, Fraud, FG, Presidency denies building rail line from Nigeria to Niger Republic

The Presidency has raised questions over how many Nigerians enjoy the benefit from low fuel prices as it has continued to defend the recent hike in petrol prices, as spokesman Garba Shehu on Friday questioned how many Nigerians benefit from low fuel charges.

While speaking on the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, during a television programme on Channels, questioned how many Nigerians have cars or generators in their homes that will require fuel.

READ: It makes no sense for Petrol to be cheaper in Nigeria than Saudi Arabia – President Buhari

It can be recalled that the majority of Nigerians had expressed outrage over the removal of fuel subsidy which resulted to increase in fuel prices. They have complained about the timing of the increase even as many Nigerians are still dealing with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Shehu, during the programme, argued that it is unfair for poor Nigerians to continue to subsidize the lifestyle of urban dwellers.

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READ: World’s largest oil company to pay $75 billion annual dividend, despite plunge in profits

Shehu Garba said, “We belong to a global market system. We are buying, mostly, refined products from the international markets. Is it fair that the taxpayer’s 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 and the herder and all of these low-level people in our society, that the taxpayer money is taken from them and is subsidising the lifestyle of our city, urban dwellers? So the President is just trying to be as practical as possible on this matter.”

READ: Nigeria’s excess crude account falls to $72 million

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On the deregulation of the oil and gas sector, Shehu also defended President Muhammadu Buhari’s comments on Independence day, where he compared the price of fuel in Nigeria with that obtained in Saudi Arabia.

He said: “So Saudi Arabia is important in this discussion because what is the technical 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 that they charge more than Nigeria. How much comes to Nigeria? One, you look at their technical cost. So therefore Nigerians should be realistic.”

READ: Implications of CBN’s latest devaluation and FX unification

He added that it was unwise for the government to continue to determine prices and be an active player in the petroleum industry.

He said, “Government is not the best manager of businesses; we should surrender them to the market. We have done this with the telecoms; the telecoms are serving the whole nation excellently well, and when we do this with petrol, we will no longer have to cope with queues, spending two nights ahead of Christmas travel. All nations of the world put this thing to the market. We should no longer pretend.

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Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Economy & Politics

Why Okonjo-Iweala should win the WTO DG role – Prof. Moghalu

Professor Kingsley Moghalu has thrown support behind Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to win the World Trade Organization top job.

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Why Okonjo-Iweala should win the WTO DG role- Prof. Moghalu

A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Professor Kingsley Moghalu, has publicly canvassed support for Dr. Ngozi Okonjo Iweala to win the World Trade Organization (WTO) top job.

The former professor of public policy at Fletcher School, Tufts University, made the disclosure via his official Twitter handle, as seen by Nairametrics

READ: WTO: Okonjo-Iweala invites volunteers, says she has no money for PR firm

Prof. Moghalu made a strong case for why Africa’s candidate should be considered for the top shot, noting that the need for Africa to get a better deal in the world trading system should be a major criterion in selecting the next WTO DG. He also believed that correcting this negatively skewed trade deal will help tackle poverty and underdevelopment in Africa.

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READ: WTO: Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala gets European Union support

What you should know

Nairametrics had earlier reported that Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and South Korea’s Yoo Myung-hee have emerged as the last two candidates for the top WTO job.

Prof. Moghalu also disclosed that the final selection decision is expected this week or very early next week.

(READ MORE:WTO DG: Okonjo-Iweala gets the backing of 79 countries so far)

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Prof. Moghalu said, “The dynamics of world trade are rigged against Africa, keeping the continent poor and undeveloped. In this piece for Project Syndicate @ProSyn, I make a strong case for why Africa’s candidate, @NOIweala, should be selected as the next Director-General of @wto.

“The final selection decision is expected this week or very early next. Alongside the case for why the African candidate Okonjo-Iweala is best placed to lead WTO, I make the case for the continent more broadly as to how and why it must get a better deal in the world trading system.”

READ: WTO accepts nomination of Okonjo-Iweala as DG despite opposition from Egypt

What this means

If finally selected for the top job, the opportunity will present Dr. Okonjo the platform to solve some global trade-related issues, one of which is Africa’s trade position with the rest of the world.

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Economy & Politics

Buhari in crucial meeting with Obasanjo, other former heads of state

President Buhari is presiding over a National Security Council meeting with some former heads of state and some security chiefs.

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Buhari in crucial meeting with Obasanjo, other former heads of state

President Muhammadu Buhari is currently presiding over a National Security Council meeting with some former heads of state and some security chiefs.

READ: Obasanjo opens garment factory, competes with Nike Art Gallery, Sam & Sara 

Although the agenda of the meeting is not made public, issues bothering on the current security situation in the country are believed to top the agenda. This follows the outbreak of violence across the country during the protest against police brutality and extra-judicial killings, which has led to the loss of lives and destruction of public assets and private properties.

READ: Update: Buhari seeks power to freeze accounts, clamp down on money launderers

According to media reports, the meeting which is coordinated from the Council Chamber of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, has in virtual attendance General Yakubu Gowon (rtd.), former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd.), former President Goodluck Jonathan and former head of interim national government, Chief Ernest Shonekan.

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READ: #EndSARS: Feminist Coalition raise Cryptos worth $126,000

Others who are physically present at the council chambers are Vice President Yemi Osinbajo;  National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd.); Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olanisakin; Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu; Director-General, Department of State Services, Yusuf Bichi; and Director-General, National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Rufai, among others are attending with the President.

READ: #EndSARS: Buhari holds National Security Council meeting with Osinbajo, IGP, others

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This meeting is coming a day after President Buhari’s national broadcast on the security situation in the country calling for an end to the #EndSARS protests as their voices have been loudly heard.

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Details later…

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Economy & Politics

Senatorial, State House of Assembly bye-elections postponed – INEC

Senatorial and State House of Assembly bye-elections slated to hold on October 31 in 11 states have been postponed by INEC.

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Nigeria's election delay

The 6 Senatorial and 9 State House of Assembly bye-elections slated to hold on October 31 in 11 states of the Federation has been postponed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The vacancies were as a result of death and resignation of previous members.

According to the statement issued by its National Commissioner & Chairman, Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye Esq., INEC said the decision was taken after meeting with the 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) on Thursday.

Though the commission did not categorically state the reason for the postponement, feelers are that it may not be unconnected with the raging #EndSARS protests across the nation.

 

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Details shortly…

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