Blame NNPC for persistent fuel scarcity, says oil marketers
The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has said the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited should be blamed for the fuel scarcity plaguing the country.
It would be recalled that the NNPC Group Managing Director, Maikanti Baru, in a statement claimed some marketers, in their quest to cash in on the situation, suddenly started hoarding products.
The statement signed by NNPC spokesman, Ndu Ughamadu, however said, “We swiftly swung into action by doubling our supply nationwide. At the time the rumour started, we had about 30-day sufficiency.
Secretary of IPMAN, Abuja-Suleja chapter accused the NNPC of lying to Nigerians about the availability of the product in the country when all the depots are actually empty.
Shuaibu said the NNPC has failed to make Premium Motor Spirit, also known as petrol, available for retail stations, but telling Nigerians not to panic.
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Recalls that fuel scarcity had resurfaced in the fourth quarter of 2022, causing queues at filling stations and forcing some retailers to shut down due to unavailability of fuel.
As a result of the shortfall in supply of petrol to filling stations, some retailers have been approaching private depots in order to keep business afloat.
However, the private depot sell fuel at a higher price compared to the petrol sold by the NNPC. This has caused fuel price to rise above N200 per litre at private filling stations, while retail stations owned by NNPC sell below N200.
“There’s a shortfall in supply but the NNPCL will be telling you not to panic, and that they have products when we cannot see them. Look at our depots, our tanks are empty.
“No petroleum marketer that used his money or borrowed money from the bank to build and invest in a filling station will lock up his station at the end of the day without any cogent reason,” Shuaibu said.
Shuaibu said Suleja and other depots in Abuja are empty, adding, “Any product you see today that comes through the Suleja Depot is by bridging.
“And when you go down south, you’ll be buying from depot owners at a high price. That is why the NNPCL should be held responsible. It should explain why the product is not in circulation.”