Nigeria plans R92bn in cash handouts to replace fuel subsidies

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Nigeria plans R92bn in cash handouts to replace fuel subsidies

Move seems to be less about economics than ensuring support for the ruling party ahead of next year’s elections

Anthony Osae-Brown and Ruth Olurounbi

Nigeria is planning to give cash handouts to the poor, that may cost the government 2.4-trillion naira a year (R92.bn) in a bid to replace fuel subsides. 

The government will give 5,000 naira (R192) each to as many as 40-million people every month, beginning from July when fuel subsidies end in June. A new petroleum law compels the government to allow market forces determine gasoline prices. The cash transfers will happen over a period of six to 12 months, finance minister Zainab Ahmed said on Wednesday.

That’s when Nigerians will vote to elect at least 30 state governors and a successor to President Muhammadu Buhari. ..

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