Fuel Queues: PETROAN Blames Distribution Issues, Proposes Marine Transportation

 

Amid the lingering fuel scarcity in some of the busiest cities in the country such as Lagos State and Abuja, the Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria (PETROAN) has decried the poor supply of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to its members.

This is despite the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) last week placing the blame on road projects in Lagos, insisting that it had a national PMS stock of over two billion litres, equivalent to “over 30 days of sufficiency.”

National President, Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria (PETROAN), Billy Gillis-Harry, spoke during a live appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Monday.

READ ALSO: After Eight Months, NRC Resumes Operations At Abuja-Kaduna Railway

“The issue is simply a dearth in supply, a difficulty in ensuring that supply meets demand. And I believe NNPC themselves are doing the most they can to try to bring succour to the Nigerian public. But I think it needs to move faster,” he said.

“There is no other difficulty that we can trace to this issue. We really can only supply to the public what we have been supplied by NNPC, knowing full well that we are not importers of PMS and there is no production of PMS in Nigeria from our local refineries.

“Right now, if we’re hearing our senior partners talking about road construction as a reason, we need to all sit down and find a way around it.

“If you ask me, I would say we can do better than that because if two billion litres is sitting down somewhere, there are so many ways that we can be able to transport the products. We can go by marine (for instance).”

Fuel queues surfaced in Lagos on Tuesday, February 8, 2022.
A file photo of a fuel queue in Lagos.

 

The PETROAN boss decried a situation where one billion litres of PMS is “sitting down” and its members are unable to pass it on to the next person in the distribution chain.

He said if the product was available, the retail outlet owners should be able to access it, adding that they were ready to do everything possible to help.

Addressing the fuel price hike, Gillis-Harry stated that PETROAN has a bulk purchase agreement with NNPC such that the corporation was duty-bound to sell to its retail outlet owners.

“But don’t forget that the 21 depots in the country today that are owned by Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC) are not functioning well because the refineries are not working and pipelines connecting these depots are not working well,” he said.

Landing Costs Should Raise Fuel Price To N220

A file photo of vehicles on a fuel queue in Abuja.

 

The PETROAN boss explained that the varied landing costs, in conjunction with its members purchasing products from private depot owners as opposed to allocations from NNPC depots, contributed to the inability to sell at the authorised pump price of N165 per litre.

“There is no PETROAN member that would sell above N165 if we got that product at the price that we have agreed with NNPC. But obviously, there are logistic constraints: ship-to-ship transfer with other charges, port charges, different kinds of charges and taxation along the way.

“First, product is imported or got through the (crude-for-fuel) swap process and then a massive mother vessel brings the product to our waters,” he said.

“From that point on, subsidy is gone because from the mother ship, it goes to smaller daughter vessels that will now start to do deliveries, whether it is going to an NNPC depot or going to a private depot.

“Once the subsidy payment ends and other logistic costs are introduced, including paying for vessels, paying for charges, port handling, landing costs, certain levels of taxing; that’s where the price comes in.

“Don’t forget that most of these charges are dollarised. So, I even sympathise with the depot owners,” he said.

According to Gillis-Harry, NNPC normally would sell the product to PETROAN members at below N150 per litre, enabling them to meet consumer demand at the agreed retail price.

“(But) as it is today, if our full landing cost is N199, N200, I think there is no way we should sell for less than N220,” he said. “That is if we are buying product that is not allocated to us through the NNPC as it is today. Now, the cost elements that come in there are very huge and they are not paid in Nigerian naira.”

FG Accuses Marketers Of Hoarding, Says No Plan To Hike Petrol Price

In this file photo, vehicles queue for fuel in Abuja on March 1, 2021.

 

Amid the biting fuel scarcity experienced across the nation, the Federal Government has cautioned petrol marketers to stop hoarding Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) popularly known as petrol.

The government, in a statement through the Nigerian Midstream And Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), also said there is no plan to increase the price of the indispensable commodity.

“The Authority wishes to inform the public that the Federal Government has no intention of increasing the price of PMS during this period,” the statement read.

“The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) has continued to import PMS with current stock levels sufficient for 34 days.

“Consequently, marketers are strongly advised to avoid hoarding of petroleum products, while the general public is advised to avoid panic buying. Marketers found hoarding petroleum products will be sanctioned appropriately.”

The authority assures the public that it would continue to monitor the supply and distribution of all petroleum products nationwide especially during the Yuletide season.

READ ALSO: Oshiomhole Blames Fuel Scarcity On PDP’s 16-Year Rule

For weeks, vehicle owners especially in Lagos and Abuja have had a tough time getting petrol from filling stations. Whilst many outlets are closed, the few ones that are open sell the indispensable commodity for as high as N250 per litre from the uniform price of N169/litre.

The shortage of supply has led to long, grueling snake-like queues at the few open filling stations as motorists and business owners jostle to buy fuel while others resort to black market. The situation has also worsen traffic on major roads as vehicle owners block at least one lane to join queues to filling stations.

Meanwhile, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) said its members get the essential product for as high as over N200 per litre from private depot owners.

IPMAN, Esele Blame Distribution Challenges, Dollar Scarcity For Fuel Price Hike

 

Amid the resurgence of queues at filling stations across the country, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) says the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) has a sufficient supply of petroleum products.

IPMAN President, Chinedu Okoronkwo, who made a live appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Tuesday, explained that the reason for the scarcity of petroleum products had to do with distribution challenges relating to “dollarisation”.

On the hand, NNPC’s Executive Vice President, Downstream, Adeyemi Adetunju, put the blame on some ongoing construction projects in Apapa, Lagos State, though he agreed that there was a “national PMS stock of over two billion litres. This is equivalent to over 30 days of sufficiency.”

READ ALSO: N186bn Oil Derivation Backlog Received So Far – Akwa Ibom Govt

However, Okoronkwo noted that petroleum marketers are expected to get the products from tank farm owners at N148.19 per litre, though according to him, they now receive the products at N185-N210.

“Their excuse will be that they hired vessels to take it from the mother vessel, pay all these charges, and some of these things are dollarised, so you have no choice. I think we can come (together) as a country to see how we (solve) some of these dollarisation things, use naira and pay some of these things,” Okoronkwo said.

“Those who have the muscle and everything to buy will buy. No, this product is there. It’s because of what I’ve just said. NNPC has enough stock but (it is) because of this distribution thing; that is where we need to do something.

“IPMAN has about five zones. You can (deposit) some of these products in various zones so that their accessibility will still be at a cost that is not even that big. We are ready to chip in something to cushion some of these things so that we can still remain within the margin. I think that is the way to go.”

File photo of fuel queue

 

Similarly, former President of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Peter Esele attributed the long queues to an ongoing issue of distribution and pricing.

Esele noted that though NNPC has enough products on the ground, tank owners have to use “daughter vessels” to get the refined products from the sea to their tanks, a task that supposedly leads to rising costs.

“Hiring a vessel is not in naira; it’s done in dollars. These tank farm owners need to source for those dollars in the parallel market. And you and I know what has been happening in the parallel market in the last month where you’ve had price fluctuations.

“What you have is the tank farm owners are now saying they need to get value for their money. They can’t now go ahead to be selling at a loss.

“So, the minimum for which you can get a product from a tank farm now is between N200 and N215. If somebody wants to sell a product between N200 and N215, how will the retailers now sell at N175? That’s a fundamental challenge,” he said.

NNPC Blames Road Projects

A file photo of tankers.

Earlier, NNPC told journalists that the recent queues in Lagos were largely due to ongoing road infrastructure projects around Apapa and access road challenges in some parts of Lagos depots.

“The gridlock is easing out and NNPC has programmed vessels and trucks to unconstrained depots and massive load outs from depots to various states are closely being monitored,” Adetunju said.

“Abuja is impacted by the challenges recorded in Lagos. NNPC Retail and key marketers have intensified dedicated loading into Abuja to restore normalcy as soon as possible.

“We want to reassure all Nigerians that NNPC has sufficient products, and we significantly increased product loading including 24-hour operations in selected depots and extended hours at strategic stations to ensure products sufficiency nationwide.”

PPMC Transition Issues To Blame For Fuel Scarcity – PETROAN

File photo of an attendant selling fuel to a customer.

 

The National Chief of Staff of the Petroleum Retailers Outlet Owners Association In Nigeria (PETROAN), Emmanuel Inimgba, has indicated that power transition issues in the PPMC are to blame for the lingering fuel scarcity and long queues experienced across most parts of the nation.

Commuters and transporters have had to bare the brunt of these recent happenings as filling stations now sell between N195 to N200 per litre.

Speaking on the state of the issue during Channels Television’s flagship show, Sunrise Saturday, Inimgba insisted the slow power transition process within the subsidiary arm was hurting the economic activities

“There is this transition going on in this former PPMC .PPMC is no longer PPMC what you have now is NNPC retail which is for filling station owners and retailer and you have NNPC trucking which is for vessels tank farms and others/”

“NNPC based on these changes that is coming up has not been made public to Nigerians to know what is actually playing out. Products that are meant to be distributed up till now; one or two persons in former PPMC are still there as transition processes are ongoing and they are yet to transmit powers to the next persons,” he said.

Asked how the transition process has affected the price of  these products, the PETROAN representative said, “They came up with a portal called customer express portal it is for every marketer and every retailer. Once you are licensed with them to do business with them they make sure you are on board. Time to time you apply for allocation of products, there is no need for you to meeting a staff.”

“But this is not happening right now as I speak to you marketers are not allocated products we don’t know how to manage any more it is confusing and troubling that is why I say whatever is holding the transition in former PPMC 100%  should be done.”

Speaking further, Inimgba maintained that NNPC was keeping the public as well as necessary stakeholders in the dark over the availability of petroleum products

‘Disagreements Between NNPC And Marketers’

 

 

However, ex president of PENGASSAN, Mr Peter Esele  aslo a guest on the show said the current situation experienced in the country is courtesy of disputes between the NNPC and depot owners over price regulations.

“Once we have scarcity as we see it, you should just know that there is a disagreement between NNPC and marketers on what they should pay you are having a cost overrun so they can’t pay at N170 or N175 is what is playing out”

“I think it has to do with government policy in the oil and gas sector in the short term .But what Nigerian need right now is this government needs to make a decision in the interim between now and May 29th in the oil and gas and to address the oil and gas,” he said.

Esele asserted that another difficulty to overcome was the access to foreign exchange to carry out transactions in as short period of time

“Depot owners are using dollars to carry out these transactions. Nobody will give you a vessel in Naira and if they are going to give you a vessel in Naira, they are going to do a conversion and the conversion rate will be done in with the parallel market because they can’t source that Dollar from CBN in 24-48 hours/”

Esele also revealed ,”I cannot tell you how long it will last, the reason they are not talking is because we have to define subsidy, can they continue subsidy that is an issue, and how much we have to agree for marketers to sell at pump price.”

“But I will tell you before Christmas, NNPC will find a way around it, but the underlying fact is get ready for price increase this is where it is dovetailing to.”

Marketers Get Petrol At Over N200 Per Litre From Depots, IPMAN Cries Out

File photo of fuel queue

 

Amid a fresh scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit known as petrol in major cities like Lagos and Abuja, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has decried the “unsustainable” price the essential product is sold by private depot owners.

IPMAN Deputy National President Zarama Mustapha spoke on Thursday on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

For weeks, vehicle owners especially in Lagos and Abuja have had a tough time getting petrol from filling stations. Whilst many outlets are closed, the few ones that are open sell the indispensable commodity for as high as N250 per litre from the uniform price of N169/litre.

The shortage of supply has led to long, grueling snake-like queues at the few open filling stations as motorists and business owners jostle to buy fuel while others resort to black market. The situation has also worsen traffic on major roads as vehicle owners block at least one lane to join queues to filling stations.

 

IPMAN Deputy National President Zarama Mustapha on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on November 24, 2022

 

Speaking on Thursday, Mustapha said private depots get petrol at the approved price of N148/litre from the sole importer of the commodity, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited. However, they sell it for as high as N195 to N210 to independent marketers.

He said though marketers get petrol at the approved price of N148/litre from NNPC depots, the company does not have enough storage facilities to cater to the needs of marketers, hence, the latter resorts to private depot owners.

Mustapha said, “It is more of the issue of the private depots collecting the products at the approved price and not selling to the independent marketers at the price approved by the mainstream, downstream regulatory authority.

READ ALSO: Sanusi Queries 66m Litres Daily Fuel Consumption, Wants NNPC Disbanded

“The agreed price as at now, NNPC sells to independent marketers at N148/litre but we don’t get the product at that rate, we get the product as high as N195 to N210 from the depot owners which is not really sustainable.”

“You cannot get a product at N195 to N200 and expect to sell it at N175,” he noted.

The IPMAN official said depot owners give excuses such as the cost of transportation of the product from the mother vessel to their depots and escalation of the dollar as reasons for the price hike.

Mustapha lamented that most Lagos depots are in a chaotic situation and marketers spend three days to load refined petrol that they are not supposed to spend more than three hours to lift.

Scarcity During Yuletide?

The IPMAN official, however, ruled out fuel scarcity during the 2022 Yuletide, saying the regulatory agencies are doing all they can to intervene and ensure the product is available at filling stations nationwide.

“There is no serious scarcity for now and I believe the management of NNPC, the regulatory bodies and others are doing everything possible to see that this Yuletide period, supply is going to be consistent, supply is going to be improved, and there will be available products in most of the filling stations.”

He urged the NNPC to engage depot owners to sell the product to marketers at the recommended price, saying the common man is at the receiving end.

Mustapha also said some of the problems associated with the epileptic supply of petrol will be a thing of the past if the country’s four refineries are working.

Buhari Flags Off First Oil Exploration In North-East

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday flagged off the Kolmani Integrated Development Project in the North-East, the first of its kind in the zone.

Buhari said the oil exploration at the Kolmani River located between Gombe and Bauchi states has already attracted over $3bn foreign direct investment and will boost Nigeria’s fortunes and earnings.

The project is expected to start with a daily production of about 50,000 barrels of crude oil.

READ ALSO: Buhari To Unveil Redesigned Naira Notes On Wednesday – Emefiele

The event was attended by Senate President, Ahmad Lawan; the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu; Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Slyva; and the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari.

President Muhammadu Buhari on November 22, 2022, commissioned the  Kolmani oil exploration site in Bauchi State.
President Muhammadu Buhari on November 22, 2022, commissioned the Kolmani oil exploration site in Bauchi State.

 

Others include Governors Bala Mohammed (Bauchi), Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe), Simon Lalong (Plateau). The Group Managing Director of the New Nigeria Development Company, Shehu Mai-Borno, was also in attendance.

The NNPC had in 2019 announced the discovery of crude oil in the Kolmani River region at the border community between Bauchi and Gombe states.

Subsequently, Section 9 of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) signed by the President established the Frontier Exploration Fund (FEF) with the allocation of 30 percent of the profit from NNPC’s upstream oil and gas contracts for the purpose of oil exploration in Kolmani as well as Anambra, Dahomey, Bida, Chad & Benue Trough.

President Muhammadu Buhari on November 22, 2022, commissioned the  Kolmani oil exploration site in Bauchi State.
President Muhammadu Buhari on November 22, 2022, commissioned the Kolmani oil exploration site in Bauchi State.

 

Read full statement from the Presidency about Tuesday’s event:

KOLMANI OIL AND GAS PROJECT HAS ATTRACTED OVER $3BN INVESTMENT IN FOSSIL ENERGY – PRESIDENT BUHARI
– Restates Net Zero Carbon Emission By 2060
President Muhammadu Buhari has declared that his administration attracted over $3bn investment in the Oil and Gas Sector at a time of near-zero appetite for investment in fossil energy.
Speaking Tuesday in Bauchi at the Flag-off Ceremony of the Kolmani Integrated Development Project, a fully integrated in-situ development project comprising upstream production, oil refining, power generation and fertilizer, President Buhari said:
“Considering the land locked location and the huge capital requirement, the economics of the project is a challenging proposition. Consequently, from the outset, I instructed NNPC Limited to utilize and leverage their vast asset portfolio across all corridors of its operations to de-risk the project to attract the much-needed investment.
“It is therefore to the credit of this administration that at a time when there is near zero appetite for investment in fossil energy, coupled with the location challenges, we are able to attract investment of over USD 3 billion to this project.”
While commending NNPCL and her partners for the successful discovery of Oil and Gas in the Kolmani River Field, the President stated that the huge investment the project had attracted “will surely be a reference subject for discussion in the industry as we pursue the just energy transition programme that will culminate in our country achieving Net- Zero position by the year 2060.”
Noting the huge benefits the project brings to the country including “but not limited to Energy Security, Financial Security as well as overall socio- economic development of the country,” President Buhari affirmed that his administration’s charge to NNPCL to explore other Oil and Gas fields beyond the Niger Delta Basins has finally yielded commendable results.
“This is indeed significant considering that, efforts to find commercial oil and gas outside the established Niger Delta Basin was attempted for many years without the desired outcomes.
“However, the successful discovery of the Kolmani Oil and Gas field by NNPC and her partners has finally broken the jinx by the confirmation of huge commercial deposits of hydrocarbons in Kolmani River field.
“This discovery had emanated from our charge to the NNPC to re-strategize and expand its oil and gas exploration footprints to the frontier basins of Anambra, Dahomey, Sokoto, Benue trough, Chad and Bida Basins. Similar activities across the other basins are currently actively on-going.
“We are pleased with the current discovery of over 1 billion barrels of oil reserves and 500 billion Cubic Feet of Gas within the Kolmani area and the huge potentials for more deposits as we intensify exploration efforts.”
Looking forward to the successful delivery of the Project which he called “another vital pillar in the Country’s economic architecture,” President Buhari urged NNPCL and partners to work with all stakeholders for a smooth execution of the project:
“I have engaged the Governors of Bauchi and Gombe States, and both have given me assurances of their unwavering commitment and willingness to ensure support and cooperation in these localities as this activity affects the local populations.
“I urge the NNPC Ltd, NNDC, and their Strategic partners to ensure all lessons learnt from our years of experience as an oil-producing nation are utilized to ensure harmonious relationship with the local communities.”
In his remarks, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, who recalled his relationship with the project, expressed his delight to be associated with the project as Minister having worked with a former Minister of Petroleum Resources when NNDC won the oil prospect lease being flagged off Tuesday.
Also speaking at the event, the Group CEO NNPCL, Mele Kolo Kyari, noted that the search for oil and gas in the frontier basins of Chad, Sokoto, Anambra Platform, Calabar Embarkment, Benue Trough, Dahomey, Bida and the Ultra Deepwater Niger Delta had spanned decades without significant outcomes.
“However, the singular determination of Mr President to ensure optimum exploration and exploitation of our natural resources and Your Excellency’s consequential directives for NNPC Limited to strategize and utilize available human, technological and other material resources to prosecute exploration activities in all Frontier Basins resulted in the discovery of commercial oil and gas deposits in the Kolmani Prospect in April 2019,” Kyari added.
There were also goodwill messages from the Governors of Bauchi and Gombe States, Bala Mohammed and Mohammed Inuwa Yahaya respectively, Chairman Northern Governors’ Forum and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, as well as the APC Presidential Flag bearer, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Femi Adesina
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)
November 22, 2022

How Crude Oil Thieves Used Technology To Lay Pipelines – Mele Kyari

A file photo of stolen crude oil.

 

 

The Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd, Mallam Mele Kyari, has lamented the spate of oil theft in the country, saying those that engage in the act use technology to lay pipelines.

Kyari, who spoke on Newsnight, a pre-recorded programme on Channels Television, said thieves succeeded in stealing the nation’s crude oil due to collaboration with government and security officials.

Noting that collaboration within the system has aided crude oil theft for a while, the NNPC boss said the extent of such collaboration is unknown to the authorities.

READ ALSO: Oil Theft: FG Defends Destruction Of Vessel, Says No Investigation Needed

“When you introduce technology into stealing and this is precisely what they did and when there is a collaboration of people who should not be part of that transactions, you can lay pipelines and no one will see it,” he said.

“You can do it in the night if you have the abilities and ultimately, this is what we think happened. You can lay pipelines for the wrong reasons to abandon or active assets. You will see end-to-end collaboration either by people who are around those assets, people operating the assets or people supposed to provide security.

“You can eliminate anything. When you find collaborators in the system, then you can get anything done. We didn’t know because the extent of collaboration is unknown to us.”

On the way forward, the NNPC boss noted that the government has stepped up efforts to tackling the scourge of crude oil thefts.

One of the measures, he explained, is that the authorities backed by other stakeholders now have full surveillance of the nation’s oil infrastructure and are facing this challenge squarely.

Kyari stated that the Federal Government has deployed helicopters for 24-hour surveillance to monitor and protect pipelines.

Oil theft has become a malignant cancer in Nigeria for years with unimaginable volumes of oil being lifted by some cabals in the oil sector. Recently, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited said it uncovered an illegal oil connection from Forcados Terminal that operated for nine years with about 600,000 barrels per day of oil lost in the same period.

Similarly, a former militant leader, Government Ekpemepulo, popularly known as Tompolo, said about 58 illegal oil points have been discovered so far since the operation to end oil theft on the waterways of Delta and Bayelsa states began.

Oil Theft: I Have Received Several Death Threats, Says Kyari

 

The Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari said he has received several death threats from people who benefitting from oil theft in the country.

Kyari, however, said he is not bothered by their threats, noting that company won’t relent until oil theft become a thing of the past in Nigeria and the country’s resources judiciously utilised for the benefit of all.

The NNPC boss stated this on Wednesday at a Legislative Transparency & Accountability Summit in Abuja organised by the House of Representatives Anti-Corruption Committee.

[READ ALSO] ‘Are We Drinking The Petrol?’: Sanusi Queries 66m Litres Daily Fuel Consumption, Wants NNPC Disbanded

He said, “Lastly, without mincing words, this industry is in shortfall of a massive change, very expensive, personal cost to many people including myself. I have several death threats to myself but we are not bothered about this because we believe that no one will dies until his time.

“This is the cost of change. When people walk away from things they are used to, to something that is new, something that will take away value and benefit from them, they will react and that reaction is beneficial to us.”

Kyari lamented that Nigeria daily loses about 700,000 barrels of crude to oil thieves.

He also said NNPC engaged private security companies in its resolve to end oil theft, noting that 295 illegal connections to its pipeline were recently discovered.

We Discovered 295 Illegal Connections To Our Pipelines – NNPC

 

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited on Wednesday said it discovered 295 illegal connections to its pipeline.

NNPC Group Chief Executive Officer, Mele Kyari made this disclosure at a Legislative Transparency & Accountability Summit in Abuja.

“We have seen thousands of illegal refineries that we have taken down in the last 45 months. We have seen connection in a 200 kilometre line. we have up to 295 illegal connections to our pipelines and many of them have been there for years,” he said.

The summit was organised by the House of Representatives Anti-Corruption Committee with the theme, ‘Enhancing Transparency & Accountability in the Oil & Gas Sector’.

[READ ALSO] NNPC Board: Court Fixes Dec 15 To Hear Ararume’s Suit

Kyari said as a result of oil theft, production equally came down to about 1.1 million barrels from 1.8 million about January of last year.

He, however, made it clear that not all the oil were stolen, explaining that “companies will stop injecting oil into the pipeline the moment they discover that they cannot get to the terminal”.

 

NNPC BOARD: Court Fixes Dec 15th To Hear Ararume’s Suit

A file photo of a court gavel.
A court gavel

 

A Federal High Court in Abuja has fixed the 15th of December, 2022 for the hearing of a N100B Suit filed against President Muhammadu Buhari over an alleged unlawful removal of Senator Ifeanyi Ararume as a non Executive Chairman of the newly Incorporated Nigeria National Petroleum Company, (NNPC).

Senator Ararume is claiming the sum from the Federal Government as damages caused him in the alleged unlawful and unconstitutional way and manner by which he was removed as the NNPC Chairman after using his name to incorporate the entity.


READ ALSO: Devastating Floods In Bayelsa, Other States Worrisome, No Time For Reproach – Presidency


At the hearing of the suit, Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo ordered that the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) be joined as a party in the suit in the absence of an objection from Mister Chris Uche who represented Ararume and Alhasan. Shuaib who represented President Buhari.

Justice Ekwo subsequently fixed December 15 for further mention into the suit and ordered that the amended originating summons be served on parties before the adjourned date.

NNPC’s Failure To Remit Funds Has Plunged Many States Into Distress – El-Rufai

A file photo of Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai.

 

Amidst the nation’s dwindling economy, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has lamented that the inability of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited to remit any revenue into the federation’s account since the beginning of this year has put many states into severe financial distress.

El-Rufai raised the concern at the 2022 Tax Dialogue organised by the Kaduna State Revenue Service held in the state capital on Monday.

He said the federal and state governments now rely on revenues and taxes generated by the Federal Inland Revenue Service and Nigerian Customs Service for survival.

According to him, the situation has led to the inability of most states to pay salaries and fulfil their social contract to citizens.

READ ALSO: ‘Are We Drinking The Petrol?’: Sanusi Queries 66m Litres Daily Fuel Consumption, Wants NNPC Disbanded

Also speaking at the event, the Executive Chairman of Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Muhammad Nami emphasised the importance of tax dialogue as a tool for engendering tax compliance and a means of strengthening tax systems.

While emphasising the importance of dialoguing on tax payment, the Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Bashir Jamoh also stressed the need for inclusivity, fairness and pooling expert ideas to aid tax policy formulation and administration.

According to them, tax authorities must create effective communication and trust strategies and also ensure taxpayers receive value for taxes paid, which are the two key drivers of voluntary tax compliance.

Last month, El-Rufai said the Federal Government has failed in the oil and gas business and should get out of the sector.

He said nothing has changed with the commercialisation of the NNPP in July 2022, adding that NNPC is Nigeria’s biggest problem and should be privatised.

“This year, NNPC has not brought N20,000 to the federation account. We are living on taxes. It is PPTs, royalties, income tax and VAT that is keeping this country going because NNPC claims that subsidy has taken all the oil revenues. I don’t believe it,” El-Rufai noted.

Commuters Stranded As Fuel Queues Resurface In Lagos

Fuel queues surfaced in Lagos on Tuesday, February 8, 2022.
File photo: Fuel queues surfaced in Lagos

 

Many commuters are stranded at various bus stops in Lagos State on Tuesday morning as fuel queues resurface in parts of Nigeria’s economic nerve centre.

Channels Television moved around some areas in the commercial city and observed snake-like queues comprising private and commercial vehicles at filling stations.

The queues spilled into main roads and took at least a lane as of 8 am on Tuesday when Channels Television moved through over 25 filling stations domiciled in the Agege, Alimosho, Ifako-Ijaiye, Ikeja local government areas of the state.

The queues appeared on Monday but worsened hours later as vehicle owners scramble for Premium Motor Spirit also known as petrol.

At one of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited outlets at Omole, near the popular Berger Bus Stop, a fuel attendant told Channels Television that the station did not get fuel supply over the weekend, hence the shortage.

Another fuel attendant who spoke anonymously attributed the supply shortfall to the flooding ravaging parts of the country, saying tanker drivers are having a tough time navigating dilapidated roads worsened by incessant rainfall and devastating floods.

READ ALSO: N3.36tn Allocated For Fuel Subsidy In 2023, Debt Profile Hits $102bn – FG

Meanwhile, commuters were stranded at numerous bus stops in the four local government areas as commercial vehicles popularly known as Danfos, and tricycles locally known as Keke Napep hiked transport fares by about 50%.

Efforts to get the comments of NNPC spokesperson, Garba-Deen Mohammed, proved abortive as of press time as his line was switched off. Also, a text message sent to his line has not been replied to.

On Saturday, NNPC Group Chief Executive Officer, Mele Kyari at the commissioning of Pinnacle Oil and Gas FZE Terminal in the Lekki area of Lagos said, “The largest consumer of petroleum product is Lagos and anytime we have any disruption to supply in Lagos, we panic because the trouble will start here.”

Floods have also disrupted fuel supply in Abuja and some North-Central states like Kogi, Nasarawa, and Benue where bridges vital for the movement of fuel tankers have been submerged.

Over 20 states across Nigeria have been affected by devastating floods in the last two months, displacing millions and killing over 600 persons, according to the National Emergency Management Agency.

The Nigeria Liquefied and Natural Gas (NLNG) Company recently declared force majeure because of the tragic floods across the country which have disrupted supply.

The notice sent users of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) also known as cooking gas into panic mode but the company said there is no need for panic buying or hoarding of the essential domestic commodity.