Monday, January 16, 2012

Goodluck Jonathan Addresses The Nation On Fuel Subsidy Removal Again

The president's speech was
meant to be aired on NTA last
night at 9pm, but didnt happen
for some reason. The guys at
Saharareporters claim to have
the speech the president made,
read the transcript below:
Presidential Address On The
Implementation Of The
Deregulation Policy In The
Downstream Sector Of The
Petroleum Industry, Sunday,
January 15, 2012
Dear Compatriots,
1. This is the second time in
two weeks I will address you on
the deregulation of the
downstream petroleum sector.
In the last seven days, the nation
has witnessed a disruption of
economic activities. Although,
the economic imperatives for
the policy have been well
articulated by government, the
Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC)
and the Trade Union Congress
(TUC) went ahead to declare a
nationwide strike.
2. There was also near-
breakdown of law and order in
certain parts of the country as a
result of the activities of some
persons or groups of persons
who took advantage of the
situation to further their narrow
interests by engaging in acts of
intimidation, harassment and
outright subversion of the
Nigerian state. I express my
sympathy to those who were
adversely affected by the
3. At the inception of the
deregulation policy, Government
had set up the Justice Alfa
Belgore Committee to liaise with
Labour and other stakeholders
to address likely grey areas in
the policy, but despite all our
efforts, Labour refused the
option of dialogue and also
disobeyed a restraining order of
the National Industrial Court of
4. However, following the
intervention of the Leadership
of the National Assembly, and
other well-meaning Nigerians,
Labour accepted to meet with
government, but this yielded no
tangible result.
5. It has become clear to
government and all well-
meaning Nigerians that other
interests beyond the
implementation of the
deregulation policy have
hijacked the protest. This has
prevented an objective
assessment and consideration
of all the contending issues for
which dialogue was initiated by
government. These same
interests seek to promote
discord, anarchy, and insecurity
to the detriment of public peace.
6. Government appreciates
that the implementation of the
deregulation policy would cause
initial hardships and commends
Nigerians who have put forth
suggestions and credible
alternatives in this regard.
Government also salutes
Nigerians who by and large,
conducted themselves peacefully
while expressing their
grievances. Let me assure you
that government will continue
to respect the people's right to
express themselves within the
confines of the law and in
accordance with the dictates of
our democratic space.
7. Government will continue to
pursue full deregulation of the
downstream petroleum sector.
However, given the hardships
being suffered by Nigerians, and
after due consideration and
consultations with state
governors and the leadership of
the National Assembly,
government has approved the
reduction of the pump price of
petrol to N97 per litre. The
Petroleum Products Pricing
Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) has
been directed to ensure
compliance with this new pump
8. Government is working
hard to reduce recurrent
expenditure in line with current
realities and to cut down on the
cost of governance. In the
meantime, government has
commenced the implementation
of the Subsidy Reinvestment and
Empowerment projects:
including the Federal
Government- assisted mass
transit programme which is
already in place, and job
creation for the youth.
9. Furthermore, the legal and
regulatory regime for the
petroleum industry will be
reviewed to address
accountability issues and
current lapses in the Industry. In
this regard, the Petroleum
Industry Bill will be given
accelerated attention. The report
of the forensic audit carried out
on the NNPC is being studied
with a view to implementing the
recommendations and
sanctioning proven acts of
corruption in the industry.
10. Let me assure
Nigerians that this
administration is irrevocably
committed to tackling
corruption in the petroleum
industry as well as other sectors
of the economy. Consequently,
all those found to have
contributed one way or the
other to the economic adversity
of the country will be dealt with
in accordance with the law.
11. My dear
compatriots, I urge you to show
understanding for the
imperatives of the adjustment in
the pump price of petrol and
give government your full
support to ensure its successful
implementation. I further appeal
to Nigerians to go back to work
and go about their normal
duties as government has made
adequate arrangements for the
protection of life and property
throughout the federation.
12. Government
will not condone brazen acts of
criminality and subversion. As
President, I have sworn to
uphold the unity, peace and
order of the Nigerian State and
by the grace of God, I intend to
fully and effectively discharge
that responsibility. Let me add
that we are desirous of further
engagements with Labour. I
urge our Labour leaders to call
off their strike, and go back to
13. Nigeria belongs
to all of us and we must
collectively safeguard its unity.
14. Thank you. God
bless the Federal Republic of

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