16 Jan 2012

Nigerian leader announces fuel price cut

9:02 pm on 16 January 2012

Nigeria's leader has announced an immediate cut in the price of fuel after effectively doubling petrol prices a fortnight ago.

President Goodluck Jonathan's decision to remove subsidies led to a general strike and widespread protests.

Mr Jonathan said he understood the hardships being suffered by Nigerians and the price of petrol would drop to 60 cents a litre, the BBC reports.

Union leaders who have called for a national strike to resume on Monday had been pushing for a 100 percent reinstatement of a subsidy on fuel that the government withdrew two weeks ago.

The unions have yet to respond to the offer.

Mr Jonathan admitted there had been an almost near-breakdown of law and order in certain parts of the country as a result of the strike.

Before the president's speech, the unions had agreed to cancel street protests and mass rallies to keep its members at home.

The announcement does not restore the full subsidy.