Timipre Sylva, minister of state for petroleum resources, says left to President Muhammadu Buhari, there will not be an upward review in the price of premium motor spirit (PMS), better known as petrol.
On Wednesday, the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) had announced N151.56 as the ex-depot price.
The ex-depot price is the price at which petroleum products are sold to marketers at depots.
Marketers are expected to then add their profit margin to the ex-depot price and determine the retail price.
Following the increment from N138.62 to N151.56, petrol marketers raised the price of petrol from N148 to between N158 and N162 per litre.
Speaking with reporters in Abuja on Thursday, Sylva said the federal government is not in charge of fixing the prices of petroleum products in the country.
The minister said it is unfortunate that citizens are blaming the government for the increase, adding that the focus of the authorities is to protect the interest of citizens.
“Government is no longer in the business of fixing prices for petroleum products, we have stepped back,” NAN quoted him as saying.
“Our focus now is on protecting the interest of the consumers and making sure that marketers are not profiteering.
You all know that President Muhammadu Buhari aligns with ordinary Nigerians, especially the poor.
“Left for him, he will never allow the increase in pump price; for this to happen, it means that it is an inevitable decision. COVID-19 took the price of crude oil to zero zone.”
Sylva said the government cut crude production from two million barrels to 1.412 million barrels per day.
The minister lamented that the deregulation of the sector was politicised.
“Deregulation will definitely come with few pains, but survival of the country is paramount,” he said.
Buhari is the minister of petroleum resources.