The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has come under fire over his comment about alleged plans to sabotage his victory.
Naija News reported on Wednesday that Tinubu said the lingering fuel crisis and naira redesign by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was part of the plot to scuttle the poll and his expected victory.
The former Lagos State Governor, who hinted that some people may be trying to sabotage the forthcoming polls, insisted that despite the various plots to sabotage his victory, he would emerge victorious in the February 25th election.
He had said: “Let fuel be expensive, only they know where they keep it. Keep petrol, keep the naira, we will vote and be elected. You may change the ink of naira notes. What you expect will not happen.
“They said petrol will rise to N200/litre and N500/litre, let your mind be at rest. They don’t want these forthcoming elections to hold. They want to scatter it but that won’t be possible.
“They thought they could cause trouble; they sabotaged fuel but with or without fuel, with or without motorcycles and tricycles, we will vote and win. This is a superior revolution.”
Reacting to the development, oil marketers said it was wrong for the APC candidate to allege that the current scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit was aimed at scuttling the election.
The oil marketers under the aegis of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, and the Petroleum Retail Outlet Owners Association of Nigeria, stated that Tinubu’s claims lacked justification.
In a chat with The Punch, National Public Relations Officer, IPMAN, Chief Ukadike Chinedu, said the issue of fuel scarcity has been a recurring issue and should not be connected to a plan to sabotage the forthcoming polls.
He stated, “The issue of fuel scarcity has been a recurring issue during transition periods. It is not basically because of this election, no!
“During the time of former President Goodluck Jonathan, I know that it took the intervention of the Senate Committee on Petroleum to sort out the arrears that were owed to marketers by the Federal Government at that time.
“And within the period of time that that issue was on the ground, there was a serious scarcity of petroleum products across the country. And even the labour unions threatened to go on strike then.
“The threat was to ensure that the outgoing government settled the money being owed to marketers. I also know that there was an intervention committee that was set up by the Federal Government to take care of that during that period.”
Also speaking, the President, PETROAN, Billy Gillis-Harry, explained that it was wrong to attribute the lingering fuel scarcity to a plot to sabotage the February election.
He said, “PETROAN says no to that. It is not correct. Petroleum product scarcity is due to the supply glitch and logistics issues that are impacting negatively on the NNPC’s efforts to flood our outlets with PMS.
“So that cannot in any way be designed to scuttle the elections for 2023. It is not correct.”