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President Goodluck Jonathan Launches Fresh Campaign for Total Removal of Fuel Subsidy



Barely a year after a the forceful removal of fuel subsidy which almost brought the country to a standstill, President Goodluck Jonathan has launched a campaign to totally remove the subsidy on fuel saying it was the solution to incessant fuel scarcity in the country. He said the removal of fuel subsidy would attract investors to the oil sector who would build refineries in the country thereby putting an end to the importation of petroleum products as it is currently being done.

According to a Punch report, he noted that although the effect of the removal might be painful initially, Nigerians would be happier in the end.

Why is it that people are not building refineries in Nigeria despite that it is a big business? It is because of the policy of subsidy, and that is why we want to get out of it. To change a nation is like surgery. If you have a young daughter of five years who has a boil at a very strategic part of the face, you either as a parent leave that boil because the young girl will cry or you take the girl to the surgeon. 

“So you have the option of just robbing metholatum on the face until the boil will burst and disfigure her face or you take that child to the surgeon. On the sighting of a scalpel of the surgeon alone, the child will start crying. But if she bears the pains and do the incision and treat it, after some days or weeks, the child will grow up to be a beautiful lady.

“There are certain decisions that government must take that may be painful at the beginning and people must be properly informed so that they will be ready to bear the pains.”

On January 1st 2012 when the President removed the subsidy on fuel, his action was greeted by mass protests across the country which paralysed economic activities in the country for about two weeks. The pump price of the product pre-January 1, 2012 was N65. It was increased to N141 under the zero-subsidy regime and consequently reduced to N97 after the protests.

The memories of the two weeks protest are still fresh and unpleasant and it would be a shame if we had to pass through a similar period again in Nigeria. Nigerians were faced with hardship as the increase in the price of fuel consequently affected prices of foodstuff and other commodities.

What are your thoughts on the President’s reasons for wanting to remove the fuel subsidy? Are you in support of the removal of the fuel subsidy or not?

Adeola Adeyemo is a graduate of Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from University of Lagos. However, her passion is writing and she worked as a reporter with NEXT Newspaper. She believes that anything can be written about; anything can be a story depending on the angle it is seen from and the writer's imagination. When she is not writing news or feature articles, she slips into her fantasies and creates interesting fiction pieces. She blogs at


  1. Kayode Tijani

    November 16, 2012 at 7:57 am

    I am fully in support of President Jonathan’s campaign for Total Removal of Fuel Subsidy as long as the President claim is true and progressive. I quote
    “He said the removal of fuel subsidy would attract investors to the oil sector who would build refineries in the country thereby putting an end to the importation of petroleum products as it is currently being done.”

  2. Phantom

    November 16, 2012 at 8:07 am

    Mr. President is a joker!! While i’m not adverse to enduring pain for a future gain, we all know things arent that simplistic around here because in this part if the world, we thrive on standing logic on its head.

    The first point of call is to rid the oil sector of corrupt elements and strenghten the enforcement of the laws we have in place. what has come out of the numerous subsidy probes?? Total removal of subsidy as things currently stand in this country wont solve nada because we cant build something on nothing. The oil thieves will simply use their loots to build refineries and life’ll go on: a win-win situation for them.

    My advise to Mr. president? fight corruption to a stand still, everyother thing wil fall in place. afterwards, he’s free to remove subsidy on air.

    • Tosin

      November 16, 2012 at 8:38 am

      You will remove corrupt elements when you remove the subsidy. You will never remove corrupt elements from free stupid flow of money. Try and listen to what Jona is saying. It’s sensible.

    • alex

      November 16, 2012 at 4:20 pm

      phantom, you have not thought about the dynamics of this subsidy thing as well as the benefits of removing the subsidy. how do tell a navy man that is collecting less than N100,000 as monthly salary to refuse a N2million bribe that can come consistently from an oil company. please let us look well at this whole corruption machinery. the simpler way of fighting it is by removing what motivates it. instead of subsidizing consumption, we should rather subsidize production. subsidization of consumption promotes corruption simply put

  3. Tosin

    November 16, 2012 at 8:37 am

    I, like many Nigerians, have always supported the complete removal of fuel subsidies. They make no sense. Subsidize what we need and want e.g. transport, industry, job production, maybe agric. Don’t subsidize what we hate e.g. IMPORTING fuel. Tax fuel imports even. Then help Nigerians develop our own.

    I should probably shut up now 🙂

    The thing is I don’t blame Nigerians for distrusting Goodluck Jonathan on this. And I don’t blame Nigerians for protesting in January, it’s normal for protests to follow subsidy removals. But for once, we have a good chance to agree with our government: subsidy removal seems like the right way to go. Both experts and regular Nigerians have been calling for this for years.

  4. Lilz

    November 16, 2012 at 9:06 am

    he has not thought it through properly. if he removes the subsidy every single thing in this country would triple in price because we rely a lot on fuel produce especially for power generation. transportation would increase, cost of production and distribution of goods and services would increase poverty would more than triple, crime rate would increase, there would be a higher margin between the rich and the poor, in fact the effect is endless. subsidy removal is a welcomed development but the basic thing nigeria needs is constant power supply..the effect of which cannot be overemphasized. when that is done, then he should tell us about subsidy removal.


    November 16, 2012 at 9:46 am


  6. Henry Womom

    November 16, 2012 at 9:53 am

    Our President has good thought for the country. what we ought to our self again, will this policy work out. Our politicians are good in preaching, telling story, promising but they don’t implement. We are tired of hearing it, that is the reason we are not totally convince he will deliver.

  7. Anonymous

    November 16, 2012 at 10:06 am

    Remove subsidy……we are spending money we don’t have on improving economies of other countries and also destroying ours…..we spend more money on subsidy than on Infrastructure…..Nigerians wake up…..put sentiments and politics aside…..and let’s d o the right thing…..

  8. nita

    November 16, 2012 at 10:30 am

    First can we trust Jonathan dt removing d subsidy will work well 4 Nigeria? How has he handled d pension scam, subsidy scam and electric power projects? Does he bother to see if he deserves d trust of Nogerians? REMOVE SUBSIDY if u must but try to subsidize oda tins like transportation, agriculture, housing so dt life will nt be too hard 4 d poor in nigeria (majority r very poor). standard of basic living in dis country is too high!

  9. D Pretty

    November 16, 2012 at 10:35 am

    I support the removal of subsidy. At least, it will be an open market now. This marketers cant keep holding us to ransom by claiming they haven’t collected their money.
    And idiot should come out and ask us to occupy. Where av they been all this months of scarcity?

  10. nems

    November 16, 2012 at 10:35 am

    People are not building refineries because Nigeria is CORRUPT AND UNSAFE, with Boko Haram bombing places and people kidnapping oil workers why would they come. Stop focusing on the BOIL and treat the girl’s BROKEN LEG, MALARIA and DIABETES.
    If Nigeria is a conducive place with all amenities up to scratch investor will come and build oil refineries, factories etc It is not all about OIL, this fixation with oil will potentially destroy this country.

  11. Mr barth

    November 16, 2012 at 10:41 am

    The idea is a fantastic one i supported he when he came up with the idea.but the part of sudsidy remove what have it been use for.

  12. Hope

    November 16, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    Nems, yes Nigeria has (many) other issues but that didn’t stop GSM investors purchasing licenses in Nigeria. The regulatory environment to stimulate local refineries is simply not there. The existence of subsidies on imports is THE chief reason why we cannot have investors investing in refineries at home. Indeed as Tosin says, it would be good to provide more direct subsidies to impact the people. But it is difficult to do this in a country with poor data, identification and knowledge management capabilities. The President has to quickly tell us the gains from the first year of SURE P. All I can say is that I am not in support of the savings from subsidy money being put right back into the same federal budget so politicians (at the National Assembly), ministers and senior civil servants will chop it as always through inflated contracts. Find more direct ways of getting fuel subsidy savings to the people, have some real results to show (not just numbers – amount of money saved) and Nigerians might start listening. Ngozi and Lamido – please take note.

  13. e-bukun

    November 16, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    This man….you want other people building refineries? Why not just put Nigeria up on Craig’s list or Ebay now while you’re at it.

  14. Idak

    November 16, 2012 at 2:30 pm

    I would not trust this man to organize a piss up in the brewery, let alone run a country.

  15. Okpe Abraham

    November 16, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    why our leaders doesn’t considered the poor masses while prices of essential commodities are high. They are trying to polished themselves by killing goat for us with mouth and we the take ear eat the meat. Where is the promise he did by january? Everybody understand their tricks, only Baba God will fight for us.

  16. Joanna

    November 16, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    The Hydra strikes again! Anyway a reality in this TRAVESTY OF A NATION! The hapless take solace in You, oh Lord, guide our steps through this quagmire till our salvation comes! And the church says Amen!

  17. aby

    November 16, 2012 at 3:45 pm


  18. fisayo

    November 16, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    The president is showing clearly he is not capable of addressing even the least of our challenges we face in Nigeria. You remove subsidy in fuel, then subsidize other sector without uprooting the problem the fuel sector faced with the initial subsidy. Will there not be the same problem at the other sector when finally subsidized? Do you create hardship on innocent people for the sin they know not? Should the perpetrators of corruption in the oil sector keep milking the nation and smiling always cos they can also find their ways into other sector with their corrupt mind set? Jona is absolutely wrong and will surely lead this nation into chaos with his terrible policy. Kill corruption and see if the oil sector would not be free from your so called subsidy!

  19. ABCOG

    November 16, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    What a comparison? The boild on a girl’s face? Say what?

    Anyway what I’d like to know is the part that has been removed, what have they done with it? Secondly, why do other people have to come and invest by building us refineries? Why can’t our government build us refineries?

  20. Ona

    November 16, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Is it just me? It seems like jonathan has been in the presidency seat like forever!!!!

    • Jo

      November 17, 2012 at 7:12 pm

      I know!
      I know JoJo will LOVE to contest for another term. He doesn’t seem smart so I know it’s that woman with Tinubu’s big sleepy eyes(Deziani) advising him. It’s up to us Nigerians with our talk talk and no action to make sure this boy doesn’t get another term in office. Ale le.. E done do.

  21. iamfascinating

    November 18, 2012 at 7:13 am

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