The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has embarked on dispensing of hoarded petrol to motorists to end the current scarcity of the product across the federation.
NNPC and other relevant bodies yesterday uncovered two more filling stations selling petrol at N240 per litre in Bassa Village, behind Abuja airport.
In its twitter handle, the corporation said the Fuel Joint Task Force was paying unscheduled visit to check diversion and hoarding of fuel and other sharp practices by oil marketers.
“Today’s operation was in line with the presidential directive that whoever is caught hoarding petroleum products should be made to lose them, and the products should be given free to motorists. This should serve as a deterrent to others.”
Meanwhile, the Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association (DPPMA) has said the Federal Government is yet to pay its members over N800 billion subsidy arrears and the NNPC is yet to supply petrol to the marketers despite receiving N90 billion.
The Executive Secretary of the association, Olufemi Adewole, who reacted to the NNPC’s statement said: “The essence of our initial press release was to throw light on salient issues surrounding the shortfall in current petrol supply which is presently solely handled by the NNPC. It was not an attempt to join issues with PPMC/NNPC with whom we partner.
“NNPC’s view of our press release stating our side of the story and seeking to defend marketers for the very first time against the unwarranted accusations of hoarding and profiteering is rather unfortunate.
“It is an undisputable fact that DPPMA members have paid for petrol supply (with bank funds) for over one month, the value of which is in excess of N90billion, yet PPMC/NNPC has no cargo to allocate to them. As such, how can we be held responsible for hoarding?
“The agencies do not transact business with DPPMA members on credit hence we are not aware of any indebtedness to PPMC/NNPC by our members. We again reject any attempt to blame marketers for the shortfall in supply as it is not our making since NNPC has been the sole importer since October 2017.”
“We assure Nigerians, irrespective of NNPC’s stance, that all possible steps are being taken as we have always done, to cooperate with PPMC/NNPC to eliminate the fuel queues nationwide within the next few days.”
Also, the Director of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Mordecai Ladan, yesterday assured Nigerians that the scarcity would soon come to an end.
Ladan gave the assurance after inspecting some private depots in Apapa area Lagos.
“I can confirm to you that products are coming in gradually in most of the depots visited. Some are being discharged while there is assurance that more will come within the nest 48hours. Petrol should be available in all filling stations across the country in a few days’ time,” he said.
The DPR urged the depots to supply more fuel the independent marketers’ filling stations, saying they were most affected by the scarcity.
According to Ladan, the independent marketers have filling stations in most major locations in the country and most of them are yet to receive supply for weeks.