The Artful Dodger Subsidy Withdrawal

By Biko Agozino

A colleague asked me to comment on his treatise on the just announced Nigerian policy of removing subsidies from petroleum products. The colleague started by stating that petrol is cheap in Nigeria and that the subsidies served as a form of wealth re-distribution especially given that there does not appear to be any other way of trickling down the oil wealth to the impoverished masses. He did not go the extra step in his logic to recognize that if his premise is right, then removing the subsidies is tantamount to raising taxation on Nigerians by executive fiat and without legislative authority. Not that it will be too difficult to obtain legislative rubber stamping with Ghana Must Go (or Imo Must Go from Abia and vice versa) bags.