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Nigeria Fuel Price Protest Turns Violent in Lagos

01/05/12

Nigeria Fuel Price Protest Turns Violent in Lagos

*Nigeria Fuel Price Protest Turns Violent in Lagos

-Masterweb Reports

On Tuesday in Lagos, an angry mob protesting high fuel prices manhandled a soldier, while police shot a young male protester. The fuel price protest is a show of growing anger of the people over government's unpopular removal of fuel subsidy that had kept the price of fuel affordable. The protest started Tuesday with protesters wielding signs, lighting bonfires along major roads and vandalizing petrol stations. The protester shot and wounded by police was reported running shouting: "The police shot me. Take me to hospital." Over 1,000 protesters in the main market area of central Lagos sang, chanted and waved placards reading "no to fuel price hikes" and "we demand living wages". Protesters formed body barriers on major roads, blocking the passage of vehicles and in some cases hijacked buses.

Fuel subsidy removal was announced by the government over the long Christmas and New Year holiday weekend. Transport fare immediately doubled and in other cases tripled, leading to many holiday travelers (especially Igbos that returned to their home states from other parts of the country) stranded. Protests organized by labour, trades unions, activists and civil society are reported in many cities across the country. Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency announced Sunday that effective immediately, it would stop paying the subsidy on fuel to petroleum importers. President Goodluck Jonathan announced Monday he had set up a committee to ensure the savings from the subsidy removal would be judiciously invested to improve the quality of life of Nigerians. He said his administration would use the projected $8 billion savings from the removal to make much-needed infrastructural development and maintenance. Union leader Oladipo Fashina disagrees with government describing the move as "immoral and politically suicidal" and urged Nigerians to resist it "with everything they have."

The subsidy removal more than doubled what people paid for fuel that is desperately needed to power generators that keep life and businesses running in Nigeria where electric power supply is almost non-existent. Protesters in Lagos went to fuel stations telling owners not to sell at the hiked price and shut down those that refused their order. Police successfully dispersed protesters with tear gas in Abuja. Most rallies for protest in Kano were aborted by police through the setup of roadblocks. The few protests that were organized in Kano were dispersed by police and in one encounter resulted in the death of a protester. Many fuel stations in the Abuja, and Lagos were shut on Monday while they adjusted their prices. Those open were jammed with queues and selling at prices of up to N150 ($1) a litre, up from the subsidized price of 60 naira before. ( Continues below….. )

An unidentified protester burns tyres

Photo Above: An unidentified protester burns tyres on a major road during fuel subsidy protest in Lagos, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012.

Previous attempts by past governments to remove fuel subsidy were met with nationwide protests that resulted in the reversal of such moves. Most Nigerians subsist on less than $2 a day. High fuel price is expected to sky rocket food prices, making life unbearable for the poor masses. Money collected by police at checkpoints will go a long way in the maintenance of Nigerian roads. Money collected by police at checkpoints from commercial drivers is passed on to passengers or the suffering masses through increased fare. Corrupt Nigeria police personnel illegally collected over N53.48b ($336.5 million) at checkpoints between 2009 and last year. This was disclosed by Emeka Umeagbalasi, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Intersociety on his report on "Police Corruption As Human Rights Abuse" - Click here to read Umeagbalasi's report.

Nigerian police are not toll gate collectors. Money the police extort from the poor masses at checkpoints should be seen by government as money that would have been collected by her at toll gates for the maintenance of the nations' roads. Government should consider removal of police checkpoint extortion and weigh the impact on her purse, before considering fuel subsidy removal. She should also 'remove' government corruption, including theft in the oil industry both by oil companies, NNPC, government officials and bunkerers. We bet you that with all the proposed legitimate 'removals', fuel subsidy removal would be a back burner on the list of government fiscal policy. Why not Nigerian treasury looters be made to return money stolen from the people? Why must the suffering masses be pushed to the brink, while nobody is questioning the police and government looters? Why must government remove fuel subsidy?

There are conflicting reports on the value of income accruing to the nation that was stashed away in foreign banks by Nigerian leaders. President Obasanjo was quoted in 2002 as putting the total amount of money stolen by African leaders at $104 billion - Click here to read article. In 2006, Dapo Olorunyomi, ex-Chief of Staff to the chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) put the amount looted by Nigerian leaders between 1960 and 2005 at $20 trillion - Click here to read article . Ex-chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nuhu Ribadu, in 2006 accused past Nigerian leaders of stealing $500 billion donors’ assistance from Western countries to Nigeria since independence - Click here to read article. The same year, Ribadu was quoted by BBC as putting the loot by Nigerian leaders since independence at over $380 billion - Click here to read article. It is not certain the value of Nigerian leaders' loot, but one thing that is obvious is that it is enormous.

Widespread poverty accounts for the bourgeoning rate of crime in the country, which is being exported overseas through Internet or mail scams, popularly known as 419. Desperate Nigerians are finding their way abroad where they are engaged in criminal or illegal activities such as prostitution, fraud, drug and human trafficking. The Mercury( a South African daily ) November 30, 2006 online issue, carried tears-causing article titled "Italian streets offer no joy, hope for Nigerian women". The article dealt on the sympathetic plight of Nigerian prostitutes in Italy, who face crushing debt, insults, rape, robbery, and battery. They are reportedly shivery and cold, soliciting customers under extremely cold temperatures and constitute over half the Italian prostitute population. The situation is worse today of the activities of desperate Nigerians abroad.

Article Source: Masterweb Reports

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30 comments

Comment from: adamu abubakar jaguar [Visitor]
adamu abubakar jaguarwe nigerians are to pray to our leaders let god help us and understand the plan that they prepared for us.
01/05/12 @ 08:43
Comment from: Apostle Nnamdi John [Visitor]
Apostle Nnamdi Johnam hereby advising Ndi-Igbo South East and south south to stay out of protest against fuel subsidy removal. Allow government in power to do who they want. Don't you know that a fight against subsidy removal is a fight to sustain your wealth in the hands of the greedy and selfish men who enrich themselves with your wealth and make you poorer? How long should we allow ourselves to be fooled! Other people will put Ndi-Igbo in the forefront to achieve their selfish course and at the end they will lay us aside. Ndi-Igbo were in the forefront in the fight for the nation's independent, but today, Ndi-Igbo have become less than second class citizens.
When you are pushed to go into strike and protest, you will end up destroying the little government infrastructures in the region and no government will rebuild them.
Didn't you see our major roads what are bing done about them? What about other projects that have been approved in the region? There is no visible implementation. It is true that suffering emanating from a rise in price of all essential commodities including transportation is telling on us. But that cannot be compared with the suffering Ndi-Igbo passed through during the civil war.
We must therefore survive it all even in the cause of time. Ndi-Igbo unite yourselves and fight for a just cause, not for subsidy removal.
01/05/12 @ 09:20
Comment from: daniel - usa [Visitor]
daniel  -  usaain't the boko haram laughing at us now? by the way, which one is worst, the boko haram or jonathan and his fuel subsidy removal.

ni
01/05/12 @ 09:38
Comment from: SAUL, ALPHONSUS [Visitor]
SAUL, ALPHONSUS@ Apostle Nnamdi John: I doubt if you are actually a Nigerian.It's even shameful that you call yourself an apostle.Whose apostle? Undoubtedly Devil's! At a time like this when well-meaning Nigerians from diverse backgrounds have united against a clueless and insensitive govt, that is bent on inflicting untold hardship on the masses, you are here playing the evil script of your sponsors.God will expose your ignoble scheme and set Nigerians free from the shackles and claws of blood thirsty tyrants and stooges like you.
01/05/12 @ 11:31
Comment from: raymond [Visitor]
raymondif i av my way i will practicaly go for a black power protection n warn any body who chooses to surpport in buying fuel at 140 per liter, i will boom any filling station i find selling for that price ,this is wat nigeria need
01/05/12 @ 11:35
Comment from: Murphy [Visitor]
MurphyThis is not the rigth time for the gorvernment of Nigeria to worsen human surfering by the said deregulation(removal of oil subsidy) If the govt lacks money to continue the subsidization if real, cant they reduce the salary and allowances of Sanators and Rep? If that is not applicable, the money retrieved as lot from ex office holders/serving are kept where? I know where the assumption of Mr. President lies, he tactically wants to measure-up the pump price in Nigeria to that of the International market. But, that cant be possible as no Government in Nigeria since the demise of Gen. Mutala Mohammed instituted relief measure to make life comfortable for all and sundry That time, everyone has the potentials to withstand the economy by getting what that want for themselves. Aside this, fact, does Nigerian Govt ever thougth of improvising social system that will allevate human surfering like the Western World? Therefore, Mr President should continue to think like a Nigerian not like the Westernals by given the masses what they want. Meanwhile, these people gave him the mandate to serve them not to kill. In this case, he should shun his ears to is evil political advisers and thier plans of turning the nation to a battle field. I ve no doubt that some of them are evilish than the devil himself. Otherwise, he would bear the brunt alone. There is an English proverb that says; many animals are carnivorous but lion bears the bad name more...
01/05/12 @ 13:01
Comment from: tony [Visitor]
tonyJonathan,i must be very honest with u we south-south people,we are shame of u.
01/05/12 @ 13:58
Comment from: kingsley James [Visitor]
kingsley JamesPoor Nigerian!!! Somebody just suggested that no one has the right to question the govt on the removal of fuel subsidy because it was meant to check the tide of corruption and looting from the suppliers,woow!For more than half a century Nigeria has been exporting crude oil and has nothing,just completely nothing to show for it.No security at all,police is grossly ill equipped and could rank very high among the world most corrupt.Army is out-datedly equipped and very far from being combat ready.no schools,transportation of any kind.Every manner of infrastructure were long gone.To my estimate Nigeria is in about 17th century.Now that the kerosene for lantern are gone too maybe palm oil lamps will replace it sending us further to stone age.For our politicians Nigeria is a banana island for their grab.None of this rulers loose any sleep about Nigeria. All everybody is interested in is how much loot we take from her.Nigerian leaders have shown the entire world how unprepared we are in governing ourselves.In fact our leaders have made us all a laughing stock.While we sabotage ourselves it is true that the energy(oil) found in our heart land has put up a magnificent show of force in all the megalopolis of the world except in Nigeria .In all these my question is,is there any man/woman or group of people(born of Nigeria)from east to west,north and south who could stand out and make a difference? And i mean someone who will command the respect of nigerians in particular and the international community in general based on his /her ability to turn things around not empty promises.And am not talking about these past politicians who elect and re-elect themselves.
01/05/12 @ 14:22
Comment from: EJOOR [Visitor]
EJOORThis is not the time for any one of us(including Devils Advocate-apostle nnamdi), to start playing sectional politics. By the way, this is no politics whatsoever. We are talking about our survival and collective existence here in Nigeria. If the people from the South East/South should stay out of the protest as nnamdi de evil-soothsayer suggests, because of the civil war, WE MIGHT AS well COUNT OURSELVES OUT OF THE NIGERIA OF TODAY and shut up for the rest of our existence.
01/05/12 @ 14:23
Comment from: paul uzokwe [Visitor]
paul  uzokweNigeria is due to be divided.The signs are there and you can see it.A stitch in time saves nigh.Better now and avoid mass blood shed than to wait and be like the countless other African Nations it happened to.Fuel subsidy will not make any change,neither will it elevate peoples life.The government has other meaningful things and issue to address ,which the article highlighted,like corruption by the leaders,Police extortion and brutal killing by the police.Corruption in the NNPC sector and many other issues more important than fuel subsidy.
01/05/12 @ 14:34
Comment from: abraham united kindom [Visitor]
abraham united kindomwell i most say this to the presdant, well let me tell u some thing mr jonathan i called u a bigger fool do u know why. i know u will not know why thats make u a fool u have been use by fools who call them selves a former leaders remember were u come from how hard it is there, what kind of hart do u have jonathan please can u tell me what happen 25/12/2011 in nigeria, jonathan u do not even have the hart for the people for ur brother and sister jonathan all u could do incrazing fuel price were are u taking all this money to jonathan but let me tell u one thing u do not know is u come to this world with nothing u shall go with nothing u belong hell
01/05/12 @ 16:46
Comment from: abraham united kindom [Visitor]
abraham united kindomFUCK ALL OF U THAT HAVE HAND IN THIS MAD FUEL INCRZ I MOST SAY U ALL SHOULD GO TO HELL AS FAR AS I AM CORNCIN U ALL ARE EVIL AN EVIL THAT MEN DO WILL LIVE WITH THEM NOT AFTER THEM.
01/05/12 @ 16:58
Comment from: murtala yakubu [Visitor] Email
murtala yakubui am not supporting removing fuel subsidy. But, i am supporting nigeria to provides security in our country
01/05/12 @ 17:11
Comment from: Osa [Visitor]
OsaBefore the removal of fuel subsidy, the Fed should have ensured that fuel prices would not be affected. The politicians, with the astronomical salary that they didn't need, should have been made to swallow at least 50% of the pain. That amount would have no effect on their living standard, infact they are paid five time more than the USA congress man. To tell the people who are already drowning in ardent poverty, couple with all the police bribery on the highways and byways is not fair. The President must be willing to stand explain the long term benefit to the people and equally subsidize the associated pain from all those monies that goes into corrupt hands, and not put more pain on the already overwhelmed population. Those that have gained from this subsidy are the people propelling these false claims, and the population bought into it, cause they are the once feeling the brunt. The president should remember his pronouncement at his inaguration, when he told the people their pain has finally comes to an end. This is not what l presumed he meant. Take money being corrupted and pump it into the society to suplement this fuel hike. Tell your ministers to hit the ground running and let there be light and good roads in the country. Continue the rebuilding of our infrastructure to creat job.
01/05/12 @ 17:15
Comment from: P. Thomas [Visitor]
P. ThomasTHE REMOVAL OF FUEL SUBSIDY

Nigerian political leaders are abnormal. Goodluck Jonathan's Ph.D academic qualification gave many nigerians, a sigh of hope that he would be different from previous and many lowly educated presidents, and politicians. We thought, that he and his economic minister, Iweala, also a Ph.D, would be ushering the nation into the kind of thinking, governing and developmental concepts seen in successful nations like the U.S.A, Britain, France, etc.

But today, nigerians are witnessing a President who with his cabinet ministers cannot reason. The wisdom that governments of developed nations have applied, and continue to apply, for more development is so abstract to our president, his economic minister, and others in his federal government, that they cannot access it.

Where did the present federal government, and the ones befor it study economics? Nigerians should ask this fundamental question. Nigeria had been exporting petroleum crude, and importing refined petroleum products sold at subsidized price. Does this make sense? Subsidy had been fraud. If there's anything that justifies removal of subsidy, the refineries should firsty be put in order, to provide the needed refined petroleum products that drive our economy. Locally produced petroleum products don't need subsizing.

Jonathan and Iweala cannot afford to dehumanize nigerians anymore, by the mill stone they're now hanging on their necks. There's no government as far as we're concerned. If they resist, nigerians should begin to think of removing these disloyal politicians from office.
01/05/12 @ 19:20
Comment from: Joe [Visitor] Email
JoeMr president and d minister shld knw dat d office is a previledge nt their right.Gej is 1 of nig most blatant lie. He suddenly 4got they agreed in 2009 abt dis subsidy. As 4 dat apostle,i dnt what u are bt certainly nt of God.
01/05/12 @ 23:47
Comment from: Wazobia [Visitor]
WazobiaThe fact is that, Mr president tends to forget his last year's promise of electrifying the nation, which if had come to fulfilment, would have been a welcoming plat form for the fuel subcidy what ever. I don't blame him much,but more on his advicers of doom, but for him to allow himself to be fooled, what then is his name? this untimely decision, has given a chance to the boko group to ridicule u the more my president. the next in their agenda now will be impeachment for u, because,it's only the fooled that goes after the culprit chick. sorry is now ur name
01/05/12 @ 23:51
Comment from: Ibrahim [Visitor] Email
IbrahimI tynk our leadas r jst heartlss,i dd nt agree dat dey av any plan 4 uz.dey r mor less lyk boko haram coz dey r inflictin pains on pple
01/06/12 @ 02:19
Comment from: samdick [Visitor]
samdickBefore increase in fuel price, the Government should ve taking time to advice the public the immediate and the long time benefite. We have surfered so much, yes but we are ready also to bear if such important information is given us.Orsele we may even object to even good project that may be good for our long time betterment.There is also one thing.I hope nigerian should know for a country to become great or standard will not just take a night to be transformed. this quick or fast or overnight change thougth have made us loose a lot of lives,properties,money and to look for fast meace. thereby comits crime around the world that has spoiled our image(nigeria)by our women doing prostitution,419,blood money etc.
01/06/12 @ 05:24
Comment from: sam [Visitor] Email
sami wonder why our so called leaders wil effect dis measure on us wen all other things are nt put inplace.why would our president be talkin abt 7point agenda@d beginin of their adminstratn wen they knw it's nt visible.fuel subsidy removal is nt d best for
01/06/12 @ 05:54
Comment from: David ayeni [Visitor] Email
David ayeniPraye is what we nig need now
01/06/12 @ 07:05
Comment from: folley [Visitor] Email
folleynigerians are coping with nepa problems,providing generators for themselves,polluting the whole enviroment,who cares,,and now with the removal of the subsidy,many people would not even be able to fuel those gens,people would be living in perpetual darkness,who cares,,the whole world is shooting ahead,,our country is giong backwards,,jonathan is taking naija back to the stone age,,,i forsee a bleak future for that country,,,,,
01/06/12 @ 08:02
Comment from: Wilson Johnson [Visitor]
Wilson JohnsonIn situation like this,it will be very good for Nigeria Army over take that sit,corruption is geting too many this time. in my one body in that aso rock have no mind to help Nig masses but all they interested is only their pocket. God will rest them. imagine Nigeria oil blessed country , were suffering 4 fuel because bad govt.
01/07/12 @ 02:19
Comment from: MUTUM [Visitor]
MUTUMGOODLUCK UR STUPID UR DOING DIS THING ON UR ON INTREST AND THIS ELEPHANT U RA CALLING WIFE DAT SHE CAN'T SPEAK SIMLPE ENGLISH MTSWWWWWW................STUPID U WILL NOT LEAVE LONG INSHA ALLAH.AND AM HAPPY WE AR ALL SUFFERING BOTH THE CHRISTIAN.CONFUSED PRESIDENT LET ME TELL U MUS LIMS WILL NEVER SUFFER 4M DIS IDIOT WITH UR BIG NOSE WAWA DOLO GARA..AND U NAMADI SAMBO WAWAN MUSULMI BA KA KOMAI SOBODA KAI JAHILINE SUN DAUKEKA DA GWAMNATIN KADUNA DAN ARNE YAHAW MULKI KAI MA DOLONE TSENANNE
01/07/12 @ 15:45
Comment from: wale akerele [Visitor] Email
wale akereleapostle nnamdi john you are as senseless as the president of nigeria . fake apostle. tell me one single thing that nigerian citizen are benefiting rom the government . eduction, roads, health,electricity all is zero the only thing nigerian could say they are benefiting they want to take it away .i dont blame u fake apostle .
01/09/12 @ 03:27
Comment from: Johnpaul [Visitor] Email
JohnpaulI think our leaders are simply putting the cart before the horse, fuel subsidy is coming up as a result of the incapacity of d gov to fix our returdant refineries, all they care is just to enrich themselves at the expense of the poor masses. Corruption is the root of our problem and unless we tackle it this country will continue to go bank rupt
01/09/12 @ 05:25
Comment from: Emma [Visitor] Email
Emmalet's analyse our problem about fuel subsidy
may be we've not view it from this aspect, am not gud in analysin but it's gud we check it this way:
Minimum wage = #18,000 (income)
Expenditure as at last year:
Transportation: #2,500
Feeding: #8,000
Clothing: #8,000
Calls: #2,000
Miscellaneous: #1,500
Total = 2,500+8,000+8,000+2000+1500=
#22,000 (as at December last year)
multiply 0.140 x 22,000 = 3080
which means 22,000+3080 our new expenditure = #25,080
definitely we are going to repair refineries with our blood
01/10/12 @ 05:21
Comment from: Rigid [Visitor]
Rigidwe are facing hell
may be we've not view it from this aspect, am not gud in analysin but it's gud we check it this way:
Minimum wage = #18,000 (income)
Expenditure as at last year:
Transportation: #2,500
Feeding: #8,000
Clothing: #8,000
Calls: #2,000
Miscellaneous: #1,500
Total = 2,500+8,000+8,000+2000+1500=
#22,000 (as at December last year)
multiply 0.140 x 22,000 = 3080
which means 22,000+3080 our new expenditure = #25,080
definitely we are going to repair refineries with our blood
01/10/12 @ 05:26
Comment from: habibullah abubakar Birnin-Gwari [Visitor]
habibullah abubakar Birnin-Gwariwe Birnin-Gwari people remove fuel subsidy
01/10/12 @ 14:28
Comment from: flugvergleich [Visitor]
flugvergleichJust want to say your article is as astounding. The clearness in your post is just spectacular and i can assume you're an expert on this subject. Fine with your permission let me to grab your feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please continue the enjoyable work.
07/31/12 @ 03:28

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