31 October 2016, Abuja – After several failed attempts at restoring peace, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Monday, has vowed not to work with both factions of the Independent Petroleum Marketers of Nigeria, IPMAN, and would instead deal with the oil marketers on an individual basis, pending the resolution of the crisis rocking the association.
In a letter to the Elder Chinedu Okoronkwo-led group of the association’s counsel, Messers A.S. Moyosore, obtained yesterday, the NNPC said its decision was based on the need to remain neutral on the issue and out of respect for the many suits that are still pending in court over the leadership tussle between Mr. Lawson Obasi and Mr. Chinedu Okoronkwo.
The letter which was signed for the NNPC’s Company Secretary and Legal Adviser by I. Onugie made reference to the IPMAN leadership crisis, while it made it clear that it is not a party to the suits and has resolved to supply petroleum products to the marketers on an individual basis.
The NNPC said, “We refer to the above matter and your letter ref: AM/PR/IPMAN/09/2016 dated September 1, 2016. We note the pendency of leadership crisis in your association and also the multifarious suits that evolved thereat and wish to maintain that NNPC/Nigerian Petroleum Marketing Company, NPMC is not a party to the pending suits.
“Therefore, the corporation is hereby maintaining its neutral position pending the outcome of the suits . “In view hereof, we shall continue to deal with our marketers on individual basis pending the outcome of the suits in the dispute.”
In the wake of the persistent fuel crisis witnessed in the early of 2016, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu had in March, waded into the lingering crises within IPMAN, so as to ensure a smooth supply of petroleum products across the country.
Kachikwu had invited all stakeholders within the IPMAN hierarchy to his office at the NNPC Towers, Abuja, and raised a 14-man committee and charged them with the task of doing everything possible to bring back peace to the association at the national, zonal and depot levels.