Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Winners and Losers of Removal of Petroleum Subsidy Protests


My initial position as regards the removal of the Petroleum subsidy which drastically put the pump price of fuel to 141.00 per litre had always been expressed on my facebook wall. For avoidance of doubt while I support the removal of subsidy, and that it should be remove, I believed it is not the right time, and if it is going to be removed at all, certain palliatives measure should have been put in place to cushion the effect of the removal of the subsidy.
On the second day the removal of the subsidy was announced, the protest that greeted it was alarming, people of Nigeria believed that government has come out to inflict pain on them and add more to their sufferings.  
I am with the government on this subsidy removal, there is no pain without gain, and from what I gathered, things would be better in no distance future from the proceeds gather from the subsidy.  I am also with the Protest too, though not to revert it to 65 Naira, but to serves as a wake up call to government that people of Nigeria are aware that the proceeds from the subsidy needs to be spend judiciously.
However, unknown to most  protesters, there are quite some people who are benefiting from the protest while there are others losing a great deal from it too. 

On the winners list are the following:

- the opposition. the President's loss is always their gain

- the so called Cabals. They will do anything to revert it back to 65 naira.

- the Nigerian Labour congress, NLC. They promptly call for strike, they will use it to negotiate for transport allowance.

- Government workers, they will still be paid during the period of Strike

- The Journalist, they get more news to publish and smile to the bank. They are actually working while some other jobs are grounded to a halt.

- Some politicians, they are using the protest to prepare themselves for 2015

- Nigerian Artiste. Most of them are siding with the Protesters to gain more support and launder their image

- The Senators, House of Reps. They got jumbo salary and government cant slashed it now because it will be a political suicide, most especially when removal of the subsidy is also a political suicide.
- The Governors. They stand to gain from the subsidy removal. More money for them to steer the affairs of the states.
- The people residing in the villages. They dont own a car, they dont own a generator, they were not subsidize fuel wise before its removal. Life continues for them.
- The GSM Operators. Strike or protests doesnt affect them, infact, they make more profits.

On the losing ends are the following
- Nigerian masses. They bear the brunt of the increase, the strike and wanton destruction in the wake of protests.
- The Traders, the Merchants. They dont have anyone to pay them transport allowance.
- The government, protest is discrediting Nigerian image they represents
-The Traders and self employed, nobody is going to pay them for days lost to Strike action.
- Economy of the nation is suffering as experts had put about N320 Billion naira as being lost to the protest    daily on Nigeria economy.
- The Banks. They will be forced to close down because of the strike.
- The sick and the hospitalised.
The Police. They are suffering the price increase, but cant complain.
- Travellers. All airport closed.
- The Rich.  They pay more to fuel their fleet of cars.
- The President, Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, Sanusi Lamido Sanisi. The hatred from angry Nigerians is too much.

These are just the little I can think of as at the time of writing this. This is indeed a period to pause and ponder on the pros and cons of this fuel subsidy removal. Pause and ponder about the protest, and pause and ponder on the way forward.

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