AHEAD of the 2019 general elections, the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and the National Commercial Tricycle and Motorcycle Owners & Riders Association (NACTOMORAS) on Tuesday demanded the President Buhari administration should return to the previous pump price of N87 per litre of petrol in the country.
They reminded President Muhammadu Buhari that it was the grass roots that voted him into power and hence, he should feel their pains “or another time is coming.”
The associations made the demand during an ad hoc committee on the review of the pump price of petrol set up by the House of Representatives.
They warned that the Federal Government should not pile up the hardship being faced by populace such as, “bad roads, power failure, unemployment, poverty, as well as medical care deterioration and high inflation of essential commodities.”
The President of NURTW, Alhaji Najeem Usman Yasin, represented by Barrister Mercy Ibeh of legal department of the union said that there should be downward review of the petrol price.
Also, the National President of NACTOMORAS, Alhaji Muhammed Sani Hassan, on his part said: “We object, reject and disagree with any plan or move to increase the pump price of PMS fuel, without leniency, sympathy or consideration of the already depleted economic realities currently being experienced in the country.”
The NURTW in its position said, “Our position is in line with the position of every other stakeholders who have spoken in favour of a downward review of the pump prices. This position is based on the fact that having sat in this public hearing for the past two days, we’re not convinced that the current price of N145/ litre is justifiable, not to talk of attempt to increase it.
“What has been obvious in the two days sitting is that there are cases of arbitrary charges. One speaker said yesterday is that there are all manners of charges from all manners of agencies. There is no doubt that these arbitrary charges somehow impact on the fuel prices, and of course, on the pockets of the masses.
“We’ve also seen that there is obviously high level corruption in high places, and this has truly impoverished the country and its people,” NURTW posited.
The National President of NACTOMORAS, while opposing the increment said that of all the fuel increments made by government since 1973, only the one of 1994 benefitted the masses through the actions of the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF).
He said that, instead of increasing the pump price, the federal government should abandon the idea of increase of the price and revert to the old price of N87.00 per litre.