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Senate Stops N5 Fuel Charge, Suspends Controversial Bill

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BY SOLOMON AYADO,

The Senate, yesterday, stopped the N5 charge it earlier proposed for every litre of fuel and diesel, as well as suspended further considerations on the National Roads Fund Establishment Bill seeking to effect the charge.

The lawmakers had, a week ago, proposed N5 charge on every litre of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) and Automobile General Oil (diesel) imported or refined in the country. They said the levy was to be meant for road maintenance.

LEADERSHIP recalls that there was outcry in the country as stakeholders including motorists and commuters vehemently kicked against the decision, saying it would amount to hike in petrol price.

Christened “The National Roads Fund (EST.ETC) Bill 2017 (S.B218)” was led and presented by the committee chairman, Senator Kabiru Gaya (APC Kano South) and signed by12 out of the 15 member Senate committee on works.

By this, if the bill was not halted yesterday, it would have sailed through to become law with a view to providing a predictable and sustainable funding for road management network.

However, disturbed by the varied concerns raised by the public, the Senate was prompted to step down the proposal and directed the Committee on Works to make “further consultations” on the matter.

The senators unanimously resolved that deducting N5 from petrol in the present recession would cause untold hardship on the generality of the people. All the senators who spoke expressed their reservations insisted the suspension of the bill.



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