Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service Argues With NNPC Over Daily Fuel Consumption
According to Col. Hameed Ali, Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited cannot justify the amount of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) consumed in the nation each day to support the over N6.34tn subsidy paid on the good each year.
During a presentation to the House of Representatives’ Committee on Finance at the ongoing hearing on the proposed 2023-2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper in Abuja on Thursday, September 1, Ali made this statement in response to a question regarding the similar deficit of between N11 trillion and N12 trillion in the 2023 budget as proposed in the 2023-2025 MTEF/FSP.
The Customs Boss asserted that NNPC’s estimate of a daily consumption of 98 million liters could not be supported by science. Additionally, he claimed that the national oil business was distributing more than 38 million liters of PMS per day.
“I remember that last year we spoke about this. Unfortunately, this year, we are talking about subsidy again. The over N11tn we are going to take as debt, more than half of it is going for subsidy. The issue is not about smuggling of petroleum products. I have always argue this with NNPC.
“If we are consuming 60 million litres of PMS per day, by their own computation, why would you allow the release of 98 million litres per day? If you know this is our consumption, why would you allow that release? Scientifically, you cannot tell me that if I fill my tank today, tomorrow, I will fill the same tank with the same quantity of fuel. If I am operating a fuel station today and I go to Minna depot, lift petrol and take it to Kaduna, I may get to Kaduna in the evening and offload that fuel. There is no way I would have sold off that petrol immediately to warrant another load. So, how did you get to 60 million litre per day? That is my problem.
“The issue of smuggling: if you release 98 million litre in actual and 60 million litres is used, the balance should be 38 million litres. How many trucks will carry 38 million litres every day? Which road are they following and where are they carrying this thing to?”
The Committee’s Deputy Chairman, Saidu Abdullahi, who presided over the meeting and made a statement in response to the admission, lamented that money from the subsidy plan, which was supposed to be utilized to finance capital projects, is instead being siphoned into private pockets.