DPR Seals Five Filling Stations In Imo

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) In Imo state during a monitoring exercise have sealed five filling stations.

The filling stations were sealed on Tuesday for selling against the directive of the Federal Government of N145 per liter of fuel.

READ ALSO: FG Directs Kachikwu To End Fuel Scarcity Before Weekend

The team led by the Acting Zonal Manager operations Ernest Chukwu says apart from selling above the normal price of N145 per litre, some other filling stations have been sealed due to hoarding and under dispensing of Premium Motor Spirit otherwise known as PMS.

The acting Zonal manager said the agency will continue to enforce the directive of the Federal Government of ensuring that fuel products are made available to the public at N145 per little and ensure that consumers get satisfaction for services paid for.

NDDC Projects: Contractors To Face Prosecution After 30 Days Ultimatum

NDDC Gives Contractors 30 Days to Return to SiteThe Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has given contractors handling its projects 30 days to return to site and complete the projects or face prosecution.

The Managing Director of NDDC, Mr Nsima Ekere, stated this following an Inter-Ministerial meeting in Abuja chaired by Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

The meeting, which took place over the weekend, had in attendance Ministers of the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Environment, Niger Delta, Information and Culture, as well as the Presidential Amnesty Office.

It reviewed the 20-Point Agenda of the Petroleum Ministry with regards to the Niger Delta, as well as the Amnesty Programme and the 16-point demand of the Pan Niger Delta Forum.

Mr Ekere said “a list of such contractors is being compiled in all the nine NDDC states and defaulters would be prosecuted”.

He stressed the need to fast-track the ongoing audit of projects awarded in the Niger Delta region, in line with government directives.

“It is important for our contractors to realise that it can’t be business as usual. President Muhammadu Buhari is determined to change how government business is conducted and everyone must wake up to that reality.

Workable Plan

“But beyond that is the fact that we owe the Niger Delta region and our people the duty to implement and complete these projects, in order to facilitate sustainable regional development.

“This is a necessary process to ensure that things are done properly, how they ought to be done and when they ought to be done. It is important to consolidate the agenda with that of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, as well as the blueprint of the State Governments, the Amnesty Office and the NDDC Master Plan, in order to roll them into one workable plan.

“We are all going to initiate quick-win projects that will give a sense of involvement to government’s approach to handling issues that will impact the people. We will organise frequent town hall meetings with all stakeholders and collaborate in building sustainable economic models for the communities of the Niger Delta,” Ekere said.

The NDDC boss also emphasised the need for the Commission to work with the Ministry of Environment and NOSREA, to facilitate the clean-up exercise in affected areas of oil spill, work on a time frame and encourage IOCs to provide more power to their host communities beyond working with Electricity Distribution Companies.

“Satellite mapping will be used to identify polluted areas in the Niger Delta and a comprehensive plan of action adopted to ensure regional clean-up. This is important because we must ensure that we safeguard our environment and give our people the opportunity and enabling environment to pursue our predominant traditional livelihoods.

“Agriculture and aquaculture are key to facilitating sustainable development in the region, particularly as we seek alternate productive socio-economic activities beyond oil and gas,” he said.

 

Petrol Now Sells For N150 Per Litre In Benin City

Petrol Now Sells For N150 Per Litre In Benin CitySome independent petroleum marketers in Edo state are now selling petrol for 150 naira per litre instead of the regulated price of 145 naira.

Motorists, as well as petroleum marketers, who spoke to Channels Television in Benin City, the Edo state capital, lamented the increase in the price saying it has brought more hardship on the people.

Meanwhile, some fuel stations in the state did not have products for sale. Some who had the product were selling above the approved price of 145 Naira a litre.

A fuel marketer, Valentine Aisuen, said: “PMS is not readily available in most of the depots and apart from that, the price at which we are buying it is high because of the limited product that is available.

“We are buying at 145, we haulage for three naira and it gets here at 148 and we now sell for 150.”

The marketers who were seen selling at the recommended price said it would not be for long before they join the fray as they were not making profit from their sales.

“If you check our pump price now we still remain at 145 naira per litre, our meter reading is accurate.

“We are keeping that to make sure we remain with our customer but we are going to do it for the time being, pending when the union will come up with their report for us to shut down because the cost of buying now, I don’t think anybody is making profit if you cannot sell above 145 naira per litre.”

Unstable Power

Some motorists also lamented the hardship the increase in price has brought to the people.

A driver told Channels TV: “Passengers complain, drivers too are complaining because things are difficult. We heard they have increased it to 200 naira; this morning some people bought for 150, some others for 200.

“Selling above that 150 is really biting us and things are not moving well. Supposing things are moving on and the power is stable then we can cope. But the power is not stable and the energy we are getting which is the fuel is very high, so it’s biting everyone one of us; we are feeling it real bad.”

Attempts to ascertain the cause of the scarcity at the Benin depot of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was met with stiff resistance by the chief security officer who denied the news crew access to key officers of the depot.

“I am working under instruction, don’t provoke me this afternoon; I beg you in the name of God don’t provoke me,” he warned.

Although the head of the Department Of Petroleum Resources (DPR) was not on seat, another official who wished not to be named said that the scarcity was due to power outage at the Warri refinery which has now been addressed.

He promised that the situation would normalize soon.

PENGASSAN Strike Continues As Discussions Hold With Ministers

Oil Workers, PENGASSAN, NUPENGThe President of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria – PENGASSAN, Mr Francis Johnson says the union’s ongoing strike continues until all issues raised before the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and that of Labour are fully addressed.

Mr Johnson told journalists after a closed-door meeting at the NNPC headquarters in Abuja that the decision on whether or not to suspend the strike would be made by the national executive council of the union.

Although the key issue of redundancy in the sector is yet to be addressed at a separate meeting Tuesday with the Minister of Labour and international oil companies, presidents of both PENGASSAN and NUPENG say discussions so far have been satisfactory.

The dialogue which held at the NNPC headquarters had in attendance the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, the Minister of Labour, Dr Chris Ngige, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, and leaders of PENGASSAN and NUPENG.

One of the issues discussed is the implementation of the 2015 Collective Bargaining Agreement between the federal government and the unions.

Also tabled for discussion were the implementation of the Petroleum Industry Bill and the state under which the oil workers operate, especially with regard to lack of power and bad roads.

Before the meeting went into closed-door, Dr. Kachikwu gave the assurance that the meeting would resolve the issues amicably.

The PENGASSAN had last week declared an industrial action over the dispute, while NUPENG postponed its action pending the outcome of this meeting.

SERAP Asks FG To End Fuel Scarcity Now

serapThe Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has called on the Nigerian government to find a permanent solution to the fuel scarcity across the country.

The group says the protracted scarcity of fuel in Nigeria amounts to a violation of the United Nations International Covenant On Economic, Social And Cultural Rights by the federal government.

A statement issued by the group notes that the protracted fuel scarcity has not only deprived Nigerians of unquantifiable economic opportunities, but it has also subjected them to unwarranted torture, cruel and degrading experiences.

SERAP added that even though fuel scarcity crisis predated the current administration, it is time President Muhammadu Buhari, who doubles as the Minister Of Petroleum Resources, rises to the occasion to find a permanent solution.

For almost a month, Nigerians have been queuing at fuel service stations all over the country to get petrol for their vehicles and other uses.

Petrol is selling over 200 Naira per litre in the South-south, while in Imo State and Anambra, it is selling for 170 Naira per litre. It seems to be worse in the Northern region where fuel is said to be sold over 300 Naira.

The situation has taken its toll on the nation’s economy which appears to be experiencing more setbacks.

Most hit are small and medium scale business owners who are unable to continue production, since they rely on petrol to run electricity generating plants.

However, the Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachukwu, has given assurances that he is trying his best to ensure the queues reduce between the first and second week of April.

Buhari To Lead Nigeria’s Delegation To Forum Of Gas Exporting Countries

BuhariPresident Muhammadu Buhari will depart Abuja on Sunday for Tehran where he will participate in the 3rd Gas Exporting Countries’ Forum (GECF) opening in the Iranian capital on Monday, November 23, 2015.

President Buhari and the leaders of Iran, Russia, Qatar, the Netherlands, Venezuela, Oman, Algeria, the United Arab Emirates, Bolivia and other member-countries of the GECF are expected to  review the current market outlook on gas and discuss strategies for boosting gas production during their meeting in Tehran.

Nigeria and other GECF members currently account for 42 percent of global gas production‎, 70 percent of global gas reserves, 40 percent of pipeline transmission of gas and 65 percent of the global trade in Liquefied Natural Gas.

President Buhari, who is scheduled to hold bilateral talks with other participating Heads of State and Government on the side-lines of the GECF summit, will also meet with Nigerians resident in Iran.

The President will be accompanied on the trip by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr  Geoffrey Onyeama, the Minister of Power, Works & Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Ibe Kachikwu and the National Security Adviser, Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (Rtd.).

He is due back in Abuja on Tuesday, November 24, 2015.

Kachikwu Orders DPR To Auction Petrol Hoarded In Stations

petrolThe Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, has directed the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR not to seal off any petrol station but instead to auction petroleum products of any marketer found to be hoarding petroleum products at this time.

Dr Kachikwu, who took a monitoring tour of petrol stations in the federal capital, said that the NNPC was deploying all its available resources to bring down the heightening panic buying and appealed to Nigerians to be patient as they bring the situation under control.

In a joint press conference with the PPMC in Abuja on Friday, November 13, the NNPC had said that there was enough premium motor spirit to last the country over two weeks and expected import to last until mid-December and projected that the ensuing fuel crisis would ease out over the weekend.

Contrary to their expectations however, the crisis worsened, with fewer stations selling the product and from fewer pumps and with the heightening frustration from vehicles owners on fuel queues across states.

This led the Minister of State for Petroleum to take a trip round petrol stations in the Federal Capital Territory on Tuesday.

He maintained that adequate quantity of petroleum products are deployed across states daily to tackle the situation and processes were ongoing to ensure that marketers receive their subsidy payments as soon as the Senate approval is given, in a matter of days.

Reacting to speculations that marketers were hoarding petroleum products in anticipation of a reduction in pump price of petrol, Dr Kachikwu said that the country and the sector cannot handle such financial obligation anytime soon.

He added that a price modulation framework is expected by January to address the critical issues for marketers over the long term.

FEC Honours Former Petroleum Minister Rilwan Lukman

kad 1The Federal Executive Council has held a special session to pay special tribute to the late former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Rilwanu Lukman, who died on July 21.

A minute silence was observed in his honour, while some of the ministers took time out to extol some of his sterling qualities.

The Minister of Petroleum Pesources, Ms Allison-Madueke, who moved the motion, described Dr Lukman as an astute technocrat whose memory would linger for a long time to come.

In her speech, she extolled the late minister’s contribution to the growth of oil and gas in the country, describing him as one of Nigeria’s best international public servants.

President Goodluck Jonathan, who led the council to pay tribute, also said that the late minister who hailed from Zaria made remarkable change in the development of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.

Dr Rilwanu Lukman died in the early hours of Monday July 21, at his residence in Vienna, Austria after a brief illness.

The late Lukman was born on August 26 1938 in Zaria, Kaduna State and left behind a wife and 3 children.

 

Poor Power Supply Is Due To Vandalised Gas Pipeline – Power Minister

minister of powerNigeria’s Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo says the poor power supply experienced across the country is as a result of  vandalised gas pipeline, a development that cuts off gas supplies.

The minister said it took more than 7 months to fix the Escravos-Lagos pipeline that was destroyed. “It took such a long time because as you begin to fix, pressurize and test, you find out there are more leakages

“The leakages continue, so it took many cycles of fixing and testing and while that was going on there was no gas coming from those lines, but now we are back on.

“For the past weeks we have been averaging 4,1000 megawatts and that has not happened in a long time, so things are really looking up,” he noted.

On Channels Television’s Saturday breakfast programme, Sunrise, The Minister said that for the first time in a long time, there had been so much synergy between the Ministry of Power and Ministry of Petroleum Resources to address the issue of gas supply.

He explained that when the NIPP projects were conceived, it was to help increase power supply but it was later discovered that there was no gas supplies to these projects. “The NIPP project is being addressed right now and efforts are being made to ensure that by the end of the year there will be gas to all the plants”.

The Minister further stated that there is gas in the east and that the government was making efforts to connect the east and west. According to him the challenge is that there is no connecting axis, a situation that the Ministry of Petroleum Resources is working hard to provide a tie in.

The Minister, however, assured Nigerians that there would be improved power supply, stating that by the end of the year, expected gas supply will come on board.

“We have an assurance from the Petroleum Resources that gas will be available to get us vastly improved power supply,” he added.

Contrary to complaints by Nigerians of poor power supply that the entire country is still experiencing six months after the privatisation of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, Professor Nebo said that there had been an improvement in power supply, explaining that previously, the nation was barely doing 3,5000 megawatts but the past couple of weeks has seen an increase to above 4000 megawatts.

Why we can’t build more refineries in Nigeria – Senator Abe

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources (downstream), Magnus Abe on Friday said the reasons why investors are not willing to build refineries in Nigeria is because it is not profitable.

Mr Abe, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said there are refineries in Sierra Leone and Amsterdam that are operated with Nigeria’s money.

“People go to the bank to get guarantee, buy crude from Nigeria and send to these refineries and the refineries are paid. Whether subsidy or no subsidy is irrelevant to that refinery,” he said.

The Senator said there is no relationship between deregulation and the building of more refineries in Nigeria. “These issues are totally not related,” he said.

“To me, why we are not building refineries in Nigeria may be one, because of the infrastructural and security challenges but more importantly, maybe we are not taking enough advantage of the fact that we are actually producing crude in this country to give guarantees to people to say listen if you build your refinery in Nigeria we promise you that you will have first charge access to our crude, we will sell to you who is refining in Nigeria before we sell to anybody who is taking it out,” he added.

Responding to the question on why the existing refineries are not functioning optimally, Mr Abe said “there is a clear incentive to the refineries not to operate at a 100 percent capacity.

“If I own a refinery in Nigeria and then you give me product and I can go and sell those products outside, I’ll probably make more money than if I refine it here, how is that an incentive to me to refine the product here?”