Following threat by oil marketers to further hike pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, members of the organised private sector (OPS) have called for the us- age of CNG-fuelled vehicles as a means of transportation. A former President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mr. Babatunde Ruwase, in an interview with New Telegraph in Lagos, stated that the private sector operators believed it’s time to consider the usage of CNG- fuelled vehicles for mass transit and private use in order to stop over dependent on PMS.
Ruwase explained that President Bola Tinubu-led government had kick-started the CNG-fuelled conversion campaign with 3,000 units of 20-seater CNG-fuelled buses. He said it was time Nigerians bought into the idea so as to mitigate the pains of continuous reliance on PMS usage in the country.
The former LCCI president noted that since subsidy removal has affected kerosene, diesel and PMS, it’s time to consider patronage of CNG- fuelled vehicles in the country. Ruwase explained: “I am ferociously advocating for CNG to be used for vehicles, especially commercial vehicles and I think that is part of what the president said about the 3,000 units of 20-seater CNG- fuelled buses. “For me, I think this is what everybody should be considering in terms of mass transit.
We have to find a way of de-emphasising this reoccurring petrol challenges because subsidy has been taken away from kerosene, from diesel and from cooking gas and that means our over dependent on petrol is now proving like an albatross to our standards of living. “It is good that he’s talking about the CNG buses and I know I have been making advocacy for that because, for me, that is the only way out of this unnecessary quagmire.”
He continued: “The last administration tried to do something about it, but it looked like plenty of plans, plenty of good intentions, but lack of drive to actually make it happen. And I know a few people whom I have contacted to change their vehicles to CNG-fuelled. “Now, we need to take it very seriously because if we are able to solve the problem of mass transit, it would automatically reduce the pain on Nigerians, because many of us that want to do big men, we can continue to do big man, drive expensive cars, I mean, drive petrol cars.
“But the real people in Nigeria should be given the opportunity to travel on CNG buses. “This is the only way to cushion the adverse effects of PMS on Nigerians and our economy at large.”