14 December 2011, Sweetcrude, ABUJA – The management of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA, on Wednesday, met with marketers of petroleum products to discuss operational guidelines for the fourth quarter (Q4), 2011 allocation, towards ensuring seamless and robust supply of petroleum products over the Yuletide season.
The Executive Secretary of the PPPRA, Mr. Reginald Stanley, who spoke to journalists at the end of the meeting in Abuja, noted that the delay in the allocation of Q4 licenses by the agency was due to the transition which came about with the appointment of a new management for the agency.
He added, however, that the delay had not caused any infraction in the supply of products, insisting that the country had enough products from the third quarter (Q3) to last the festive season.
He said, “As a major stakeholder at the forefront of ensuring uninterrupted supply and distribution, government and the general public shall be expecting from us pragmatic solutions to the perennial scarcity, especially during this festive period when consumption of petroleum products is expected to increase astronomically.”
Stanley noted that reported cases of queues and sharp practices at some filling stations across the country, was largely because of anticipated government pronouncement of the commencement of the deregulation policy by the New Year.
“This trend can only be curtailed if all of us shows sufficient commitment to government’s effort to make the downstream sector more efficient and sustainable,” he added.
The PPPRA boss further noted that the Agency has put in place stringent operational guidelines to ensure efficient Q4 allocation, adding that oil marketers granted permits in Q3, but who have not fulfilled their obligation before the end of the year would face stiff sanctions.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has cautioned against the growing incidence of panic buying and indiscriminate hoarding of petroleum products by some Nigerians in anticipation of the planned removal of subsidy on premium motor spirit (pms) by the Federal Government.
In a statement by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the Corporation, Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, the Corporation blamed the emerging fuel queues noticeable in the Federal Capital Territory and some Cities in the country on the unfortunate rush by some marketers and consumers to mop-up enough products in anticipation of the envisaged take-off of the deregulation exercise which they believe will commence with Tuesday’s budget presentation by Mr. President.
“From the stand point of supply and distribution of petroleum products, we are positive that there is no need for anybody to indulge in any form of hoarding and amassing of petroleum products because nothing has changed about our adequate stock levels. Even from the Health, Safety and Environment point of view, it is extremely dangerous to store products at home especially in this period of dry wind and harmattan,’’ Ajuonuma stated.