The Federal Government on Thursday commenced the payment of subsidy on kerosene to the tune of N1.17 for every litre of the product consumed across the country, latest data from the pricing templates of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency has shown, according to Punch.
This is coming as inspection officers from the Department of Petroleum Resources clamped down on defaulting oil marketers by forcing them to dispense kerosene at the regulated price of N83 per litre.
On January 23 this year, PPPRA’s template for House Hold Kerosene had shown that there was no more subsidy on the product, a development that stakeholders described as a subtle way of ending the subsidy regime.
But the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, had argued that the subsidy regime on petrol and kerosene was never terminated by the Federal Government.
According to him, what the government did was to modulate the prices of the commodities based on the fall in crude oil price in the international market.
His argument has now been upheld as the latest figures from the PPPRA show that the government has recommenced the payment of subsidy, and this is based on the marginal rise in the price of crude oil to about $40 per barrel.
The PPPRA is the agency of the Federal Government that fixes and regulates the prices of white products like petrol and HHK, as well as other refined petroleum products across the country.
An analysis of the template posted on its website on March 17, 2016, which was based on Platts’ average prices, revealed that the expected open market price (true cost) of kerosene at filling stations run by independent/major oil marketers was N84.17 per litre.
This is against the official approved retail pump price of N83 per litre at which the outlets are mandated to sell the product.
The PPPRA also stated in its template that the government was making an under recovery of N1.17 on every litre of kerosene consumed in the country; meaning that the commodity is being subsidised to the tune of N1.17 by the government.
For stations run by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, kerosene is being subsidised by N0.81 per litre, according to the regulatory agency.
On why the DPR decided to clamp down on marketers selling above the regulated price, the agency’s Assistant Director, Operations, Abuja Zone, Mr. Ahmed Alaku, told journalists that it was wrong for any dealer to sell above the approved price no matter his or her claims.
Alaku refuted claims by some marketers that they were getting the white products at high rates from depot managers.
“If you claim that you buy the product from the depot at more than the regulated government price, there should be evidence. You cannot come and say you bought the product at N90 per litre and you are selling at N100 without any evidence,” he said.
UK Government Has Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
The United Kingdom on Wednesday Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
British government on Wednesday became the first country to approve Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use, according to the UK government.
The vaccine will be rolled out from next week and the first dose could be administered as early as December 7th, stated people familiar with the matter.
Last week, the UK government announced it had ordered 40 million doses of Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 and appointed Nadhim Zahawi, the current junior business minister, as the minister responsible for the deployment of the vaccines.
British government on Wednesday morning said, “The Government has today accepted the recommendation from the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for use”
“The vaccine will be made available across the UK from next week.”
Matt Hancock, Health Secretary, revealed that the programme would commence early next week.
“It is very good news,” Hancock said.
Zabarmari Massacre: Buhari to Provide More Resources for the Nigerian Military
President Muhammadu Buhari has promised to provide more resources to the military in the aftermath of the Zabarmari massacre.
On Saturday, Boko Haram killed 43 people with around 70 people still missing in Zabarmari, a village in Borno State.
Reacting to the massacre, Buhari, through his official Twitter handle @MBuhari said “Nothing is more important than ensuring the security of lives and property of Nigerians. Everything is secondary when security is at stake. I will ensure that more resources are made available to the military and other security agencies to prosecute the war against terrorism.
“As we mourn all the lives lost in Zabarmari, the Armed Forces have been given the marching order to take the fight to the insurgents, not on a one-off, but on a continuous basis, until we root out the terrorists.
“We will intensify our cooperation with neighbouring countries on bilateral and multilateral levels, to ensure that there is no hiding place for the terrorists.
“As I noted earlier, the massacre by Boko Haram in Zabarmari is nothing short of senseless, barbaric, gruesome and cowardly. It reinforces our resolve to root out all forms of insurgency and insecurity not just in Borno but everywhere across Nigeria.”
Boko Haram Kills Rice Farmers in Borno State, Northeast Nigeria
Rice farmers were killed on Saturday morning in the Northeast Nigeria by suspected Islamist militants, Boko Haram, according to a Reuters Report.
The report also noted that 30 of the people killed were beheaded while over a dozen others were still missing.
However, resident of the Zambarmari Village where the attacks took place said a total of 70 people were feared dead.
Another resident and Amnesty International were quoted as saying at least 10 women were among those missing.
In another statement by Edward Kallon, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, it was armed men on motorcycles that led the brutal attack on civilians harvesting their fields.
“Armed men on motorcycles led a brutal attack on civilian men and women who were harvesting their fields,” Edward Kallon stated.
“At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack,” he added, noting that several women are believed to have been kidnapped.
“The incident is the most violent direct attack against innocent civilians this year. I call for the perpetrators of this heinous and senseless act to be brought to justice,” Kallon said.
On Sunday, Governor Babaganan Umara Zulum of Borno State, who was at the burial told journalists that at least 70 farmers were killed on Saturday.
The Governor, therefore, called on the Federal Government to recruit more Civilian Joint Task Force members, Soldiers and civil defence fighters to protect farmers in the region.
He added that people are facing desperate choices.
“In one side, they stay at home they may be killed by hunger and starvation, on the other, they go out to their farmlands and risk getting killed by the insurgents,” he said.
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