The Federal Government said yesterday that it has paid additional N34.6 billion fuel subsidy claims to verified oil marketers.
A statement from the Federal Ministry of Finance made available to LEADERSHIP indicated that the N34.6 billion was paid on August 22, 2012, bringing total payments for the 2011 subsidy claims to N78.899 billion.
The FG said it has paid a total of N259.34 billion for the 2011 arrears.
The government in the statement signed by Senior Special Assistant to the Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Mr. Paul Nwabuikwu, said the N78.899 billion was paid to 24 oil marketers with 23 claims while the payment for 2011 arrears was made to 79 oil marketers.
According to the statement, "some of the (2012) claims were settled before substantive implementation of the Aig-Imoukuede Committee's Report which led to the suspension of payments of all 2012 claims to oil marketers under investigation for serious infractions."
The Federal Government reiterated its commitment to continue to pay marketers whose claims have been duly verified in line with its commitment to encourage honest and professional private sector operators in the subsidy regime.
This, the government said was aimed at protecting and enhancing the interests of the Nigerian people, noting that the Federal Ministry of Finance makes payments based on submitted batches by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).
"The Federal Ministry of Finance has emphasised over and over again, that only marketers whose documents have been verified, processed and cleared will be paid. It is also important to note that both the number of claims by marketers and the amount paid have reduced significantly due to the work of the Aig-Imoukhuede Committee and the rigorous procedures which have been adopted to check fraud," it said.