The Presidency has said that it will be unfair to receive taxes from farmers, herdsmen and other low-level individuals in Nigeria and use it to subsidize for fuel and other lifestyle of the urban dwellers.
Senior Special Assistant to President Mohammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, stated this on Friday, while speaking on channels television’s ‘Politics Today.’
Recall that a lot of criticisms have trailed President Muhammadu Buhari’s Independence Day speech, where he said it made no sense for petrol to be sold cheaper in Nigeria than in Saudi Arabia.
Nigerians have lambasted Buhari for the comparison, insisting that the President ought to have compared the minimum wage in Nigeria with that of Saudi Arabia.
Responding, however, Shehu said, “Is it fair that the taxpayers’ money…how many Nigerians have cars anyway? How many of them run generators in their homes that they need this fuel for?
“Is it fair that the farmer, herders and low-level people in the society that the taxpayer money is taken from them are subsidising the lifestyle of our city urban dwellers? The President is just trying to be as practical on these matters as possible.
“So Saudi Arabia is important in this discussion because what is the technological cost of producing a barrel of oil in Saudi Arabia?
“It’s not more than a quarter of what we spend here and yet you see them charging more than Nigeria. How much comes to Nigeria when you look at our technical cost?”
Many Nigerians have faulted the President’s comments saying the same indices used to measure economic growth in Saudi Arabia should not be applied to Nigeria and Nigerians.