|Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala|
Nigeria's Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala have urged oil workers threatening to go on strike over unpaid subsidies to abandon the plan which she said would disrupt supplies of petrol and other fuels. Dr. Okonjo-Iweala said further that government would pay valid subsidies to traders.
A report from Reuters today quoting an e-mail from the office of the Minister said that "The Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has directed the Debt Management Office to pay marketers with verified claims as soon as supporting Sovereign Debt Notes are provided,"
Reuters also quoted the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation(NNPC) as saying that it was owed $7 billion in fuel import subsidies. Other traders also reportedly complained that they have outstanding debts.
The report also said that the Finance Ministry paid $105.79 million subsidies in June. The Ministry according to Reuters said that some subsidy payments have been withheld pending conclusion of ongoing investigations into fraud allegations against some fuel traders.
"It is clear that some marketers also owe government significant sums of money and that government expects that these will be paid," Reuters quoted the Finance Ministry.