Marketer Alleges Bribery Of Petroleum Taskforce In Edo

PetroleumA petroleum marketer has accused a top official of the Edo State Petroleum Monitoring Committee of alleged weekly bribery request to sell fuel above government approved price.

The Managing Director of DVD Oil, Valentine Aisuen, raised the alarm after some of his workers clashed with the Chairman of the monitoring team at his fuel station in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

He alleged that the Chairman of the state’s Petroleum Monitoring Committee, Amen Osunde, instructed him to pay 200,000 Naira weekly to enable him sell fuel above pump price.

The oil marketer said that the Chairman had hinted him of his impending visit to alter his displayed price ahead of his arrival.

According to Mr Aisuen “I was not around when Amen called me that he is in my station that he instructed me few minutes ago to change the pump price to 87 Naira, that I should be selling above pump price with calculator but what will be displayed will be 87 Naira”.

He said prior to this, he had explained to the official why he could not sell at the government approved price.

“I showed Amen the way I buy my product and the way I sell, I am not a major marketer. He now told me that if I will have to sell above pump price, I will be settling.

“Before now, we have been settling Amen. As far as this station is concerned, we settle Amen every week. I send him (pointing to one of his employees) to go and give Amen money twice in a week.”

Two of the workers narrated how they were beaten up by members of the monitoring team. A female worker said her phone was seized.

“I brought out my phone to video what was happening, only for one of the boys to start hitting me and asking for the phone.

“At the process of telling him I cannot give him the phone, he bought out a handsaw and threatened to use it on me. Then I gave him the phone and he left with it,” she said.

In his reaction, Mr Osunde denied the allegation, describing it as blackmail.

“Petition and blackmail is part of the job. I have decided to take it in good fate, because people will always talk.

“That does not mean that in a situation like this, there cannot be some elements of truth. But in respect of what he said or what they are saying, they are outright lies,” he said.

Make Nigeria’s refineries work, NUPENG tells Jonathan

As Scarcity of petroleum persist in some part of the Country, The National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas (NUPENG) charged the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency, put the nation’s four refineries in a fully functional state, if fuel subsidy deduction is in the interest of the people.

NUPENG President; Comrade Igwe Achese was speaking to journalists in Calabar, Cross River state after their week long union meeting alongside the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria(PENGASSAN).

The oil and gas unions said only working and effective refineries can remove the incessant sufferings Nigerians are facing.

Igwe echoed that the only solution to the problem at hand is for the refineries in the country to be functional and effective and that is the position of the union on the matter.

The NUPENG President added that, if the president can not address the issues affecting the union and the nation as whole, the oil workers will be left with no other choice than to down-tools any moment.

PENGASSAN President; Comrade Babatunde Ogun also spoke on the need to improve on the ills in the oil and gas sector saying the insensitivity of government to listen to the union led the oil industry to the present situation it is presently, as most marketers have hiked the price.

Ogun remarked that corruption in the industry calls for proper scrutiny and called on the Federal Government to stop casualization and improve the security of the workers.

Other issues discussed included the unions support for the passage of the petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), deregulation of the downstream sector as well as assessment of the Removal of the fuel subsidy.

Fuel scarcity looms as petroleum marketers threaten shutdown

Petroleum products marketers under the aegis of Jetties and Petroleum Tank Farms Owners of Nigeria (JEPTFON) have threatened to shut down operations with effect from Monday next week if government does not rectify the subsidy payment process.

The marketers, who ventilated their grievance over the federal government’s unilateral action to withhold payment of subsidy, said the action of government was threatening the continued survival of their business and the larger economy.

In a communique issued at the end of an emergency meeting in Abuja on Friday, the Executive Secretary of the association, Enoch Kanawa said the withdrawal of subsidy payments is also a clear breach of contractual obligations, insisting that outstanding payments to subsidy claims should also be paid in full.

The jetties and tank farm owners also described as unacceptable the unguided statements by government officials labelling members of its association as fraudulent and irresponsible, demanding immediate apology.