The immediate past Lagos State Zonal Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Alhaji Tokunbo Korodo has disclosed that more than 1000 oil tankers visit the 60 tank farms that are in Apapa and environs due to Federal Government inability to provide fuel at strategic places across the country.
Speaking with our correspondent last week, Korodo who is also the Vice Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Lagos said that the collapse of other petroleum products loading bays in the country has led to the large number of oil tankers seen in Apapa where we have most of the tank farms.
He said the inefficiency of government should not be passed on tanker drivers, but on the current and the past government failure to address this structural development.
According to him, “We all know that, the inability of the Federal government to provide fuel at all strategic places, you know we have some loading points across the federation. In Kaduna, we have Kaduna refinery to take care of Kaduna and its environs, we have Port Harcourt refinery to take care of Port Harcourt and some eastern part of Nigeria, we have Warri to take care of the South-South region why we have at Apapa to take of South-West.
“The inefficiency of the government should not be passed on tanker drivers, but the current and the past government failure to address this structural development, because I know in every normal circumstances where we have a loading point, there must be a provision for a loading base where tankers can just park before they move in for loading . If you go to Apapa, on your left and right you would see majority of any available space within the corridor of any available tank farms will soon be converted to tank farm, that is the problem we are facing”.
He further informed that he took him and his friends to fight the military and the administration of the former Governor of Lagos state, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to get a truck park for the oil tankers due to the failure of tank farms owners to provide a holding bay.
“It took me and my colleagues some courage to fight the military and administration of Asiwaju, you know we were able to secure that portion of Orile axis, which was named after Bola Ahmed Tinubu, but because of the expansion ongoing, on the corridor of Badagry express way it has reduced drastically the spaces of parking at that corridor”
“So we projected 3600 parking space in the process of modeling that place, because of the expansion less than 2000 now remain for tank space to park despite that, the increase in tank farms across the area, so we are trying our best with the little space we have
“The marketers have their holding bays, but there are some that cannot accommodate up to 100 trucks and this has been a major concern to everybody.
“Because we are a responsible and reliable organization, we are in partnership with our colleagues at the new toll gate along Ibadan express road, so those are the area we still use as holding bays, where we encourage call up system within ourselves. I can even tell you that every trucks that comes into Lagos must surely have a destination where to pick fuel, unlike other articulated vehicles, to us, we can’t just move anyhow, we must have a space before we move into Lagos, because Lagos is already saturated”, he said.