16 January 2012
By Xan Rice in
The move appeared to have ended a week of economic paralysis and protests that threatened the oil supplies of
Africa’s biggest crude producer and questioned the government’s capacity to deliver much needed reform at a time of mounting public debt and declining foreign reserves.
The climbdown can also be seen as a blow to Goodluck Jonathan, president, who campaigned as a man of the people but has now alienated many supporters.
On Monday he fixed the price of petrol at 97 naira (60 US cents) a litre – it had cost 141 naira after he withdrew the subsidy on January 1. This is still substantially higher than the old price of 65 naira.