Marketers Groan Over Scarcity Of Fuel At NNPC Depot

The COO Gas & Power of NNPC, Mr. Saidu Mohammed representing the GMD of NNPC, Dr. M. K. Baru delivering a lecture  at the 14th Annual Aret Adams Memorial Lecture in Lagos last week.

Petroleum marketers in Apapa Lagos are currently groaning over the non-availability of fuel at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) depot at Mosimi, in Ogun State over the incessant vandalization of pipelines.Shipping Position Daily correspondent who spoke with some of the marketers last week in Lagos gathered that the popular NNPC Mosimi storage facility in Ogun State have not had any product to distribute in the last one year, thus subjecting the marketers to their fate in the hands of private depot owners in Lagos. One of the marketers; Alhaji Moshood Agbolahan confirmed to our correspondent that petroleum tankers which hitherto load products from the Mosimi depot are now trouping into Apapa for the product.Apart from being a loading depot, Mosimi was designed and designated as a Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation storage facility to receive and redistribute petroleum products from Atlas Cove to Ogun, Lagos, Oyo, Osun, Ondo states and all parts of the South-West, up to Kwara State.This is even as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Mosimi Depot, Ogun State has said Nigerians, particularly those in Ogun and Lagos states, may soon experience scarcity of petroleum products due to a number of factors militating against the smooth operations of its members.The Chairman, Mr. Samuel Idowu, said in a statement last week that independent marketers had been buying petroleum products from private depot owners in Apapa at exorbitant prices due to non-availability of the products at Mosimi, where products were to be sold at the government-approved ex-depot price of N133.28 per litre for petrol.“As we speak, the private depot owners sell petrol for not less than N141 per litre, excluding the cost of transportation to our various filling stations, which ranges between N4 and N8, depending on the distance and/or location of the station,” he said.He said the excesses of the private depot owners should be checked as IPMAN “is aware that almost all the products sold by them are imported by the NNPC to be supplied to marketers at government-approved prices.”“These products are, however, sold to independent marketers at exorbitant prices with the connivance of government regulatory agencies. There must be adequate monitoring and effective sanction to ensure compliance by the depot owners,” Idowu added.According to him, the association wants the NNPC to provide Mosimi independent marketers with dedicated depot(s) from where they will be allowed unhindered access, while all other areas of concerns should be addressed with the urgency they deserve.Idowu described difficulties at transfer and bridging points as another major challenge being faced by independent marketers from Mosimi where one truck of product was not loaded earlier than three weeks or more, depending on the depot where the transfer or bridging was being done in the Apapa axis of Lagos.He said, “In order to avert the looming scarcity of petroleum products, the independent marketers in Mosimi want the Federal Government to ensure the immediate commencement of loading of petroleum products at the NNPC depot, Mosimi, from where marketers are assured of getting the products at government-approved ex-depot prices.“IPMAN Mosimi appreciates the zero tolerance of the present government led by President Muhammadu Buhari for vandalism. We urge the government and its agencies involved in the fight not to relent until pipeline vandalism becomes a thing of the past. A few unpatriotic and disgruntled elements should not hold the larger majority of Nigerians, the states and Federal Government to ransom.”