Gbenga Daniel, senator-elect for Ogun east district, has praised President Bola Tinubu for being “bold enough” to declare the petroleum subsidy regime over.
Daniel spoke in an interview with Arise TV on Thursday.
During his inaugural speech as president, Tinubu said “fuel subsidy is gone”, adding that there is no provision for it in the budget beyond June 2023.
“Subsidy can no longer justify its ever-increasing costs in the wake of drying resources,” he added.
The situation has generated mixed reactions from stakeholders and citizens across the country.
Adding his voice to the conversation, Daniel said the subsidy regime had become unsustainable, adding that “everybody” is aware of the fact.
He said the subsidy is not just for Nigerians, noting that petroleum products are illegally smuggled to neighbouring West African countries.
“The thing I want our people to appreciate is that everybody has come to appreciate that the subsidy was not sustainable. But nobody was bold enough. And even the outgoing president said it would go after he had left,” the senator-elect said.
“And somebody has come and said, let us stop deceiving ourselves. Another thing I have noticed, and many people have not spoken about, is that the biggest problem with the subsidy is that we are not just subsidising Nigerians but West Africa.
“And I do not see how that is sustainable anyway. And if there is no way of ensuring it stays within the shores of Nigeria then, which is also part of the problem of smuggling, then clearly, we cannot continue to subsidize the entire West African sub-region. We do not have such capacity.”