The Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd), recently announced that Nigeria’s fuel consumption has reduced by 30 per cent since the stoppage of petrol sale in towns 30 kilometres away from the borders.
Ali disclosed this to the House of Representatives Committee on Customs, where he stated that the ban, although irksome, had been profitable, as smugglers could not steal petrol bought for N145 to resell elsewhere at over N300 to the detriment of the country’s economy.
He disclosed that the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) was contacted to provide the customs with a list of petrol stations legally licensed to operate in the area, but they refused.
“We have asked the DPR since last year to give us the list of approved and illegal petrol stations, but they refused. The filling stations are used to smuggle fuel out of Nigeria. The decision to suspend supply was taken to contain our consumption,” Ali said.
The comptroller added that the ban on petrol sales not far away from the borders was temporary and would be reviewed to ensure that Nigeria no longer subsidizes fuel for neighbouring countries.