The National Economic Council (NEC) is currently meeting at the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa, Abuja,Dailytrust report.
Vice President Kashim Shettima is provisionally presiding over the meeting that holds 48 hours after the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) reviewed the petrol pump price from N540/litre to N617/litre.
This is the second major increase since the discontinuance of petrol subsidy on May 29, by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
The meeting comes amid expectations of government palliative to reduce the discomfort being experienced by Nigerians consequent upon subsidy removal.
The meeting of the highest economic advisory body will, among other activities, receive recommendations to mitigate the effects of the removal of petrol subsidy on workers, including a proposed living wage adjustment estimated at N702.9bn in allowances.
Already, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has directed that the N8,000 conditional cash transfer programmed envisaged to bring succour to most vulnerable households be reviewed immediately after criticisms from Nigerians and the organised labour. He also assured Nigerians that the N500 billion approved by parliament to cushion the pain occasioned by the end of subsidy regime would be judiciously utilized.
The Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of NNPCL, Mele Kyari, had linked the increase in petrol pump price from N540 to N617 per litre to market forces.
Similarly, the Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), Farouk Ahmed, who also said the price increase arose from rising crude prices, cited changes in freight prices alongside other ancillary costs importers incurred during distribution.
Present at the ongoing meeting are the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), George Akume; Group CEO of the NNPCL, Acting Governor of the Central Bank, Folashodun Shonubi, Acting Accountant-General of the Federation and Permanent Secretaries of the Ministries of Petroleum, Agriculture and Budget and National Planning.
Also present are the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State and Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Hope Uzodinma of Imo State.
Equally in attendance are Governors of Osun, Gombe, Katsina, Lagos, Nasarawa, Ogun, Kaduna, Kebbi, Yobe, Delta, Bayelsa, Abia, Zamfara, Anambra, Bauchi, Jigawa, Cross River, Plateau, Edo, Benue, Akwa Ibom and Sokoto are also present. While Enugu, Oyo, Rivers, Adamawa and Kano states are represented by their Deputies.