How State Governments are Addressing the Effects of Fuel Subsidy Removal on Transportation Costs

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How State Governments are Addressing the Effects of Fuel Subsidy webp

Following President Tinubu’s removal of fuel subsidy in Nigeria, some state governments are taking steps to mitigate the impact on their citizens. The removal of fuel subsidy has caused a significant increase in the price of petroleum products, leading to hardships for the people. The high cost of fuel has affected the price of other commodities and services, including transportation. In response, state governments like Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe have implemented measures to address the transportation cost, such as providing cheap fares and releasing additional buses. Adamawa state is also planning to purchase shuttle buses and provide subsidies to workers and pensioners. Yobe state is still considering options, including free transportation for students and civil servants.
 

Following President Tinubu’s decision to remove fuel subsidy, several state governments are taking measures to lessen the impact on their citizens.

During his Inauguration on June 12, President Tinubu declared that his administration would not support fuel subsidy as an obligation to the Nigerian people.

This announcement caused immediate outrage across various sectors as the price of petroleum products, particularly Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), began to rise.

This has resulted in significant hardships in the country, as an increase in fuel prices affects the prices of nearly all other commodities and services in the market.

A prime example is the cost of transportation, as commercial drivers bear the direct consequences of high fuel prices. In the black market, the cost of PMS is exorbitant!

As a result, market traders also raise the prices of their goods due to the high cost of transportation involved in getting their products to the market.

This simple example confirms the claim that the majority of Nigerians, if not all, are directly or indirectly affected by the rise in fuel prices, which subsequently impacts other sectors of society.

The unfortunate truth remains that while the cost of living continues to skyrocket, salaries and wages of workers remain unchanged.

In response to the crisis, the governments of Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe states have taken steps to mitigate the effects of increased transportation costs caused by the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government.

These state governments, which operate state-owned transport companies, have made efforts to ensure that their fares remain the most affordable among other transport companies in their respective states.

Babagana Zulum, the Governor of Borno State, has not only implemented lower transport fares but has also approved the release of 50 buses to address the situation.

According to his Special Adviser on Media and Strategy, Mallam Isa Gusau, these buses will be added to the fleet of the state-owned transport company, Borno Express Corporation.

Gusau told reporters that 30 vans have also been provided to offer free rides for farmers, particularly those residing in Maiduguri, to the outskirts of the state capital where their farmlands are located.

Both a University of Maiduguri student, Mustapha Abdullahi, and a government worker, Ali Modu, who utilize the government buses that charge N50 per drop, praised the government for its intervention.

“I use Borno Express buses every day, paying N50 from Post Office to the University of Maiduguri, instead of the N150 charged by taxis and tricycles,” Abdullahi said.

Similarly, in Adamawa state, Governor Ahmadu Fintiri has established a special committee to address the issue of high transportation costs and find ways to alleviate the effects of subsidy removal on the population.

The committee, led by the governor’s Chief of Staff, Dr. Amos Edgar, will be responsible for finding significant solutions to the challenges faced by the people of the state. Dr. Amos recently revealed the Adamawa state government’s plan to purchase shuttle buses for workers and inter-local government transportation at a subsidized rate.

He also stated that the government will approve a monthly subsidy of N10,000 for all workers and pensioners.

Mr. Labaran Salisu, the Director of Transport at the Adamawa Ministry of Transport, mentioned that some of the 250 partially leased vehicles in the ministry’s possession for inter-state services will be deployed for town service at a subsidized rate.

Meanwhile, Dr. Mohammed Goje, the Yobe State Executive Secretary of the State Emergency Management Agency, announced that the state government is still deliberating on modalities to mitigate the effects of subsidy removal on the people of the state.

Dr. Goje stated that the government plans to provide free transportation for students and civil servants, but the details are still being determined.

“Very soon, the state government will provide buses for free transportation for civil servants and students,” he said.

 

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