FG Denies Petrol Price Hike, Marketers Seek Deregulation

The Federal Government has denied any increase in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol, despite the hike in the cost of the commodity across the country.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, in a statement issued by his media aide, Horatius Egua, in Abuja on Friday, said President Muhammadu Buhari had not approved any price increase for petrol.

The statement read in part, “President Muhammadu Buhari has not approved any increase in the price of PMS or any other petroleum product for that matter.

“There is no reason for President Muhammadu Buhari to renege on his earlier promise not to approve any increase in the price of PMS at this time.

“Mr President is sensitive to the plights of the ordinary Nigerian and has said repeatedly that he understands the challenges of the ordinary Nigerian and would not want to cause untold hardship for the electorate.”

The minister added, “The government will not approve any increase (in the price) of PMS secretly without due consultation with the relevant stakeholders. The President has not directed the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority or any agency for that matter to increase the price of fuel.

“This is not the time for any increase in the pump price of PMS.”

He said what was playing out was the handiwork of mischief makers and those planning to discredit the achievements of the President in the oil and gas sector.

“I appeal to Nigerians to remain calm and law-abiding as the government is working hard to bring normalcy to fuel supply and distribution in the country,” Sylva added.

The minister’s position has, however, caused confusion as oil marketers had earlier confirmed the increase in petrol price by N10, stating that this was one of the reasons why major marketers were currently dispensing the commodity at higher rates.

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