Legislators in the house of representatives say “unnecessary charges” by Petroleum Products Price Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) are the reason Nigerians pay N145 per litre for premium motor spirit (PMS).
At a public hearing on Monday, the ad hoc committee on the review of PMS said the 145 per litre pump price was causing Nigerians “great pains and suffering”.
The legislators said for instance, 30 kobo, which was meant for “administrative charge”, was provided for in the 2016 budget but Nigerians still pay for it.
The lawmakers said there is also similar provision for such charges in the 2017 budget proposals.
“In the 2017 budget, which is before us, PPPRA has a proposal of another N500m for regulation, monitoring and supply of petrol,” Nnana Igbokwe, chairman of the committee, said.
“This budgetary provisions have already taken care of the purpose for which you charge 30k on the template, yet Nigerians continue to bear the burden by paying N145 per litre.
“This has left Nigerians in a situation whereby they still pay for lightening services for smaller vessels that go to Cotonou or Lome to offload products from mother vessels. PPPRA will then add the cost to the pump price and ask Nigerians to pay.
“Can Nigerians be paying the cost of capital by importers and dealers? Can Nigerians be paying for lathering services when there are agencies whose duties are to dredge our sea? How effective and transparent is the bridging claims?”
Victor Shidok, executive secretary of the PPPRA, told the committee that the 30 kobo administrative charge was used for data capturing and monitoring of staff deployed to depots across the country.
Speaking separately, the organised labour — comprising Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) — said it would not accept another increase in PMS price.