By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Monsur Olowoopejo
LAGOS — As organised labour threatens to shut the nation’s economy from Monday, unless the Federal Government reverses fuel price to N65 per litre, Lagos State Government, yesterday, said it expected the impact of the subsidy removal to be positive on Nigerians.
State Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Ben Akabueze, while addressing newsmen on the N491.941 billion budget analysis, said there would be moderate consumption level of fuel by Nigerians in the face of current increase in pump price occasioned by the recent removal of subsidy on petrol by the Federal Government.
Akabueze also said the criminal act by some unscrupulous importers of the product, who divert it to neighbouring countries after claiming subsidy on it from Federal Government will be checked.
He said: “Consumption will be reduced compared to what was consumed during 2011 and it represented the difference between N65 and the landing cost of those products.
“What we will see is that consumption will reduce because many will be forced to park their cars and take public buses. All of the petrol that were brought into this country as local consumption and subsidy claimed on them, which later find their way out of the country, will no longer happen again in the country.
“The consumption will decrease and correspond to the amount of subsidy. What is true, however, is that because there is no more subsidy, the amount often deducted for subsidy from the federation account will now be available for the three tiers of governments. So we expect the impact of the subsidy to be positive, if properly applied.”