The All Progressives Congress’ national leader has described the Subsidy Re-Investment Programme (SURE-P) of former President Goodluck Jonathan as a ‘monumental fraud’.
Bola Ahmed Tinubu
The national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Ahmed Bola Tinubu, has described the Subsidy Re-Investment Programme (SURE-P) the immediate past administration of President Goodluck Jonathan established the scheme in 2012 as a ‘monumental fraud.’
The APC chieftain went further to say that the the programme was used as an avenue to exploit the country, adding that money realised from the savings of fuel subsidy removal from Buhari’s administration would be spent on critical infrastructure projects and social safety net programmes.
“They offered no programmes of valid compensation to the people. Instead, they instigated a policy of monumental fraud known as Sure-P.
“However, the only thing sure about it was that its architects would siphon the public’s funds to fatten their own wallets. They wanted to save money (for themselves) yet expend the people for no good reason at all.
“The decision to end the subsidy was hard but it was also inevitable. It had distorted into a system where wrongdoers benefited at the expense of the innocent.
“The bogus supplier was paid for supplying nothing while you sweated in long lines for fuel that was never there. The smuggler secreted fuel across the border while our economy crossed the border into fuel scarcity. As the price stayed fixed at a low level, investors were apprehensive about fixing existing or building new refineries.
“Our petrochemical industry remained unfertilized because potential investors could not decipher how they could make a decent return under such a pricing regime. Because of these imbalances, we were forced to export hard currency and many jobs to purchase fuel and other products abroad. While the price of fuel was cheap in paper, these were the hidden costs that made the subsidy regime an expensive and heavy yoke the nation could ill continue,” Tinubu said.
Tinubu also advised the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to monitor the oil sector in order to prevent a situation where the liberalisation of the sale of petrol will be abused, adding that the policy would serve the interest of the people and put an end to the alleged distortion and manipulation in the downstream sector.
“To construct the right building sometimes means we have to tear down the wrong one standing in our way. Our economic development hinges in equal measure on saying good bye to debilitating and corrupted old practices as it does on embracing efficient, wealth creating new ones,” a statement read in part.