The Federal Government on Thursday said it had so far paid oil marketers N500bn within the last five months as fuel subsidy.
This was contained in a statement by Mr Paul Nwabuikwu, the spokesperson to the Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
Giving a breakdown of the amount paid so far as fuel subsidy, the minister said the government had, in December 2014, paid N350bn to oil marketers, noting that additional N31bn in foreign exchange differentials had already been released.
She added that the Federal Government’s commitment to prioritise payment to marketers in spite of revenue constraints, has now made the ministry to release N156bn to the marketers.
The statement read, “In line with the Federal Government’s commitment to prioritise payment to marketers in spite of revenue constraints, the Federal Ministry of Finance has paid the sum of N156bn to oil marketers.
“The payment has two components. The first consists of the cash backing of the N100bn IOU which the marketers were given in March. The second is N56bn in interest payments for the marketers according to the PPPRA template.
“This leaves a balance of N98bn certified by PPPRA as the amount owed the markers.
“The N156bn is the latest in a series of significant payments made to the oil marketers within the last five months.
“These include over N300bn in two installments in December last year and N31bn in interest differentials recently.
“In all, oil marketers have received over N500bn within the past five months”.