…accuses FG of encouraging corruption
By Chris Ochayi
ABUJAâ€”The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) has joined the organised labour, trade unions and the civil society groups in rejecting the proposed deregulation of the downstream oil sector, vowing to participate in the full blown national strike to be embarked upon by the labour movement should the Federal Government goes ahead to implement the anti-people policy.
National Publicity Secretary, CNPP, Mr. Osita Okechukwu who stated this in a statement yesterday said the government argument that Nigeria is spending over N600 billion annually in subsidizing petroleum products imports was never a justification for this draconian policy.
He said the subsidy makes no impression on the citizenry as should have been the case, but for the cesspool of corruption that subsists in the oil sector which carved a big gulf between the citizens and the government; thus creating distrust and disconnect.
Criticising the government for encouraging the activities of oil cartel and multiple taxes at the ports, he said, â€œhow can one reconcile that 76 signatures are required for a petroleum tanker to discharge its cargo in our ports?
The outcome is unwarranted demurrage accumulation as tollgates are mounted on each of the 76 points of clearance. The costs of the tollgates are passed on to Nigerians the end consumers as subsidy from an inefficient and corrupt government.
According to him, â€œCNPP has carefully examined the documents and accessed reputable sources relating to crude oil allocations, lifting, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) transactions and signature bonus proceeds from 1999 to 2008 and came to the inevitable conclusion that over $3 trillion accrued to the nation; most of which were not paid into the Federation Account, denying the states, local councils and the citizenry their due allocation and hence $1.7 billion is missing.