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Subsidy: We’ve Received N4.9trn So Far, NNPC Tells Senate

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it has received more than N4.9trillion as payments for subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol between 2006 and 2015.

NNPC Chief Finance Officer, Mr Isiaka Abdulrazak, disclosed this on Monday during a public hearing conducted by the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) in Abuja.

Top officials of the corporation who appeared at the investigative hearing were led by the NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr Maikanti Baru.

The NNPC officials were summoned by the lawmakers amid the persisting fuel scarcity in the country and the controversy over the payment of fuel subsidy.

Briefing the senators on the issue, Abdulrazak said subsidy payments were duly approved by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).

He said: “All NNPC’s subsidy claims and entitlements are duly verified and approved by PPPRA with relevant certificates issued,” he was quoted as saying by the corporation.

“The subsidy approved for NNPC is backed out of Domestic Crude Cost payable to Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC).”

On the essence of the payment, the NNPC official explained that subsidy is a duly authorised reimbursable amount from Petroleum Support Fund (PSF) to compensate for products supplied at the government regulated price.

He, however, informed the panel that while a total of N5.1tr was duly approved by PPPRA as subsidy claims for the corporation, NNPC is still being owed N170.6bn.

Abdulrazak further sought the understanding of members of the committee on the peculiarity of NNPC operations, and its role as “a supplier of last resort in the downstream sector of the economy.”

Despite the purported payment of fuel subsidy, Nigerians have continued to experience difficulty in getting the product with long queues at filling stations.

On Wednesday last week, Baru had decried the sustained nefarious activities of cross-border fuel smuggling syndicates and hoarders in the country.

The NNPC boss, who addressed a Joint National Assembly Committee on Petroleum (Downstream), noted that fuel supply and distribution matrix across the country have been hindered by such activities.

Concerned with the lingering fuel crisis, the Senate issued a directive to the NNPC to end fuel queues in seven days from January 25.

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