Nigeria: Fuel scarcity looms over varying fuel pump price

*Consumers queue up for fuel at an NNPC station.

*Consumers queue up for fuel at an NNPC station.

15 June 2016, Kaduna — Owners of Mega Filling Station in Nigeria, on Tuesday, threatened to shut operations nationwide over alleged plans by the management of Nigeria National Petroleum Company, NNPC, to impose lower pump price of fuel price on them.

At a briefing in Kaduna by the Mega Filling Station Owners of Nigeria, AMFSON, its National Secretary, Kenneth Nwachukwu, claimed the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, who is also Minister of State for Petroleum, had directed that all mega filling stations sell fuel at varying rates of N130.00, N135.00, N140.00 per litre, while their competitors sell at N145 per litre.

According to him: “We are kicking against a directive by the Minister of State for Petroleum that we sell fuel for less than N145 per litre. We are all marketers and we get supplies at the same source and at the same price. Why should we be made to sell at N130, N135 and N140 per litre while others sell for N145 per litre? With this pronouncement by the Minister, we foresee a looming fuel scarcity because we may have to shut operations nationwide.

“We also see fuel scarcity because some unscrupulous marketers would rather get their supplies and sell in the black market at N145 than take the fuel to their stations and this will cause another crisis in the retail chain.” “We have never seen this kind of policy.

In fact it will increase corruption which government is fighting tooth and nail to stop. Some people are already bribing their way at the depots and officials there are selling to them at a price lower than the official one. These people can afford to sell at a price lower than N145.

But we buy at the official price and as such cannot be forced sell lower than N145. “We cannot be in the river and allow soap to enter our eyes. Take a look at Kaduna situation for instance, how can someone in Sabon Tasha area of Kaduna city be selling at a lower pump price, and another person will be selling at a higher price along the same Eastern Bypass, the same vicinity, is there justice in this kind of supply and distribution of NNPC products. We want to recall that in the heat of recent past fuel crisis in the country, we had a meeting with the Minister, where we proffered solutions to fuel scarcity. We gave him our support.”

*Luka Binniyat – Vanguard

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