Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has assured that the short and medium term plans adopted to tackle the embarrassing fuel crisis in the country will yield position results soon.
He said all stakeholders in the sector are working tirelessly round the clock to ensure relief is brought to Nigerians with assurance that the long queues at filling stations and the general product scarcity will end in the next two weeks.
A statement at the weekend by Group General Manager Public Affairs of the NNPC, Garba Deen Mohammed said, “As at 1600hrs of today, one (1) PMS cargo containing 42 million litres has completely discharged, two more PMS cargoes with a combined ‘Remaining on Board’ (ROB) of 44 million litres are currently discharging while another PMS cargo containing 44 million litres is berthed and awaiting discharge.
“We have enough products lined up to ensure that the supply gap which created the problem is bridged. In order to ensure effective distribution we are working with Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), oil majors and over 1,000 NNPC staff, nationwide to ensure we overcome the obstacles in the distribution of the products.
“While not resorting to excuses we would like to emphasise that this present management of NNPC and indeed the government inherited huge and complicated problems with respect to importation, distribution and pricing of petroleum products. Nigerians would recall that the sum of N522,258,934,505 meant for payment of fuel subsidy, covering the last quarter of 2014 (October to December) and the entire 2015 was approved by the Senate in December 2015 in order to pay for subsidy arrears inherited by this government.
“For long term solutions, the NNPC and the government is working to put in place machineries to ensure that our refineries are fixed and working optimally, while the pipelines which have been under attack for some time now are repaired. The Direct Sale Direct Purchase (DSDP) arrangement for crude would commence in the first week of April and all these coupled with the fact that the President has given his support to increase the crude supply to NNPC to ensure local sufficiency of products will go a long way to solve the problems in the short and long term.
“We wish all Nigerians a happy Easter holiday and assure that while we celebrate the Easter, the NNPC will continue to work hard to bring the fuel scarcity to a speedy end.
Kachikwu had earlier last week announced that Nigerian may continue to suffer the scarcity till May. However, he said, the management of the Corporation is committed to ending the scarcity soon.
“Our immediate concern is to make petrol available through the interventions and processes put in place so that the queues will disappear within the next one to two weeks.” (Daily Sun)