OPS seeks palliatives on fuel subsidy removal

The Organised Private Sector (OPS) has urged the Federal Government to introduce palliative measures, saying that the removal of fuel subsidy caught them unaware. 

Speaking with The Nation, the Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Muda Yusuf, said the removal of subsidy will raise the price of some services and also cause pains to the citizens. 

Besides, he said it will worsen the already battered economy, adding that the cost of transportation will increase and this will affect cost of production. 

“ This is not the right time for this kind of decision. It will worsen the conditions of  citizens,  especially an average Nigerian,” Muda said. 

He, however, noted that the subsidy removal will lead to the diversification of the economy and encourage private investment in the downstream sector. 

“It will also reduce pressure on our foreign reserves, but as I said an average man will feel the impact most,” Muda said. 

The President, Nigeria Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA),Dr  Ademola Ajayi,  said the subsidy removal caught the chamber by surprise. 

He said it was sudden because the President did not mention it in the budget. 

Ajayi said the government need to address the infrastructural problem, such as power, to ease the pain. He, however, said the OPS will issue a statement on the decision. 

To the former President, Nigeria Association of Small and Medium Enterprise (NASME), Dr Ike Abugu, the decision is premature and it is going to hit the SME sector. 

Abugu said it is a wrong decision, adding that it will rubbish some of intervention fund been put in place by the government. This is because it will increase the cost of doing business. 

“This can kill the SME sector, unless government introduce some palliatives as soon as possible,” he said.

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OPS seeks palliatives on fuel subsidy removal