President Buhari Pledges to Provide Burundi with Petroleum Goods Despite the Lack of Fuel
President Muhammadu Buhari promised aid with fuel distribution to Burundi on Tuesday, as Nigerians continue to struggle with the effects of fuel scarcity.
While hosting the special representative of the president of Burundi, Evariste Ndayishimiye, at the State House on Tuesday, Mr. Buhari made the commitment.
The president vowed that Nigeria will support the Republic of Burundi in many ways as needed in the spirit of African solidarity and brotherliness, according to a statement signed by Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity.
Following that, the president of Nigeria made a commitment to provide gasoline assistance to the Burundian people.
The statement read: "On the Burundian leader's request for assistance in the area of energy provision, particularly fuel, President Buhari said he understands what it's like for a country to experience an energy shortage and promised that he would get the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited to look into the request.
Burundi's Minister of Finance, Budget, and Economic Planning Audace Niyonzima said in his speech that President Burundi had wished Nigerians and Mr. Buhari a happy new year. He also sent his best wishes for the nation's upcoming general elections in February and March.
"We pray that the polls would be peaceful and successful so that Nigeria would continue her image as a bulwark of peace and stability," the Special Envoy stated.
Mr. Buhari made the pledge as Nigerians struggled with an ongoing electricity crisis that left homes in the dark and devastated businesses all over the nation.
In recent years, gasoline scarcity deteriorated in Nigeria, increasing lineups at filling stations and leaving millions unable to fuel their cars and generators.
Nigerians have experienced difficulties obtaining gasoline supplies at filling stations in recent months, particularly after the government announced plans to eliminate fuel subsidies.
The scarcity has persisted despite the government's repeated declarations it had enough petroleum products in stock.
In several areas of Nigeria, owners of filling stations that offered petroleum products sold them for more than the government-mandated pump price.
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited and fuel marketers were given a 48-hour deadline in December to find a solution to the country's persistent petroleum shortage in an effort to reduce the everyday tension that Nigerians experience.
If the issue persisted after two days, the secret police declared it would "commence operations" throughout the nation.
Despite the threats, however, the shortage of fuel persists as drivers and other end users continue to bemoan it, even during holiday seasons.