28 February 2014, Abuja – The fuel scarcity currently being experienced across the country will linger on until security operatives improve on their processes to clear the huge number of awaiting petrol laden cargo ships in the high sea President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Abdulkadir Aminu said yesterday.
Speaking in an interview in Abuja, the IPMAN boss said the problem is with the fuel distribution and that until the process is hastened, the effect of the scarcity caused by delayed cargo clearance processes would be continuous disruption in loading at various depots.
Fuel queues resurfaced in Abuja at the beginning of the week and have spread to many other states as motorists and travellers groan under higher cost of transportation.
He dismissed allegations that marketers were the cause of the scarcity saying, “I totally disagree with the insinuations that marketers are the ones hoarding the products at the filling stations”.
“The real issue is in the high sea,” asking “to what extent a marketer can hoard the product in the filling station. In the high sea, we have 42 days sufficiency, so how can a marketer hoard?”
Aminu insisted that “the Nigeria Navy and other security personnel on the high sea have their own mode of operations as security officers, they can only explain better how they clear these vessels but to best of my understanding, their delays in clearing the ships on the high sea is the cause of the problem that the nation is facing today”.
According to him, “until when that ship to ship transfer of products on the high sea is allowed to take place as at when it is due, then only when the tanks farms are wetted and until when they are wetted, then we have free loading process”.