Despite the ongoing products scarcity scare the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has restated its commitment to ensuring copious supply of petroleum products across the country to aid hitch-free movement of motorists during and beyond the Festive Season. The Corporation noted this following reports of threats by the Lagos Chapter of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) to withdraw its services in Lagos and its environs sequel to alleged discrepancies in ex-depot prices, among others.
In a statement by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, the Corporation clarified that the Ejigbo Satellite Depot was fully stocked and carrying out regular loading services.
The Corporation further explained that the Ejigbo Satellite Depot had consistently dispensed premium motor spirit (petrol) at the approved price of N133.28 per litre contrary to allegations that it was sold at a higher price.
It said there was enough petroleum products in the country to last till the end of the year and that 25 vessels laden with petroleum products were also being expected to berth between now and January 2018 to further boost supplies.
The Corporation, therefore, urged members of the public not to entertain any fear or engage in panic buying of petroleum products as there was enough to keep the country well supplied.
It stated that the appropriate government agencies have been contacted to settle the rift between IPMAN and the Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association (DAPPMA).In a related development the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Kacalla Baru, who cut short his trip to London, in a bid to salvage the fuel supply and distribution challenges witnessed in some parts of the country due to panic buying from motorists, has called on Nigerians to stop panic buying as the Corporation was doing everything within its reach to address the situation.
Dr. Baru, who was billed to receive the Forbes Oil & Gas Man of the Year Award 2017 in the British Capital last Tuesday , flew back home to attend to what he described as a “matter of urgent national importance.”
He said, “For the umpteenth time, I wish to call on all Nigerians to stop panic buying. We have said times without number that NNPC has sufficient products to cater for the needs of all consumers.”
Before leaving for London, the GMD had directed that more truckload of petroleum products be dispatched to various parts of the country to cushion the effects of excessive demand caused by panic buying.
NNPC had, also, informed Nigerians that there was no plan whatsoever to increase the prices of petroleum products both at the ex-depot level and pump price ahead of the forthcoming yuletide.
The NNPC in a release said that the ex-depot petrol price of N133.38 per litre and the pump price of N143/N145 per litre have not changed noting that the Corporation has enough stock of fuel to ensure seamless supply and distribution of products across the country.
While assuring that the Corporation has the full commitment of all downstream stakeholders including petroleum marketers and industry unions to cooperate in achieving zero fuel scarcity this season and beyond, the NNPC enjoined motorists and other users of petroleum products to disregard trending rumours of an impending fuel price hike as reported in some news platforms.
The Corporation also noted that its downstream subsidiary companies namely the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) and NNPC Retail Limited are fully geared up to ensure that motorists enjoy uninterrupted access to petrol throughout the nation during the yuletide period and beyond.
It was, however, gathered that 22 ships laden with petroleum products, food items and other goods are expected to arrive Apapa and Tin-Can Island ports in Lagos from December 22 to December 30.
The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) stated this in its publication, “Shipping Position’’ on Monday in Lagos. NPA said the ships contained buck wheat, empty container, bulk salt, aviation fuel, diesel, petrol and containers laden with goods.
The five ships, it was further gathered, had arrived the ports, waiting to berth with bulk fertiliser and petrol.