Fuel Scarcity Spreads to Kaduna, Other States

fuel scarcityThe ease of getting petrol by motorists and other residents in Kaduna has become more difficult as long queues resurfaced in the state capital and other parts of the state.

Channels TV correspondent who monitored the situation within the state capital, reported that long queues have taken over the few filling stations in the city, selling the petrol as motorists besiege the outlets to get the product for their respective uses.

Motorists and commercial tricycle operators were seen struggling to get into the station as only two out of the ten pumps were dispensing product to customers.

As at the time of filing this report, black marketers have resurfaced along major roads and streets, selling petrol above the official pump price. A gallon of petrol sold at N120 per litre as against the N86 per litre.

Residents expressed fears that the situation could worsen and affect socio-economic activities if nothing is done by government to address the situation.

Virtually all filling stations in the state capital have not been dispensing the product since the start of last week due to the drop in supply to the state.

Abeokuta, Ogun State

In Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, the situation remains the same for a week running.

Over 80% of fuel stations in the state capital still remain without fuel, a development which has left people stranded at filling stations most times for a product that is non existent

Some residents who thronged fuel stations in the metropolis as early as possible have resulted into finding comfort in their vehicles to take some nap while waiting for a time when the product would be made available

As a result of the short supply of the product, there are reports of the product being sold illegally above the official pump price.

PPMC Says Fuel Will Soon Be Available

fuelThe Pipelines and Products Marketing Company has asked the Nigerian populace to calm down as petroleum products will be available in the fuel stations soon.

The MD of PPMC, Esther Nnamdi-Ogbue said that about four vessels containing 30,000 tonnes of PMS arrived in the country on Sunday and the agency is doing all it can to ensure that the product is distributed efficiently.

Queues returned to the fuel stations in the last week and many motorists have been complaining about the seeming worsening situation in fuel supply.

NNPC Moves To Unbundle PPMC

PIBThe Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is to commence the unbundling of the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Ltd (PPMC) into three different companies, as part of efforts to ensure lean, efficient and profitable operations.

The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, hinted about the planned unbundling during an official tour of the Okrika Jetty and the Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited on Wednesday.

Dr. Kachikwu stated that the PPMC would be split into a pipelines company that would focus primarily on the maintenance of the over five thousand kilometers pipelines of the Corporation; a storage company that would maintain all the over 23 depots and a products marketing company that would market and sell petroleum products.

According to him, the move would ensure that the right set of skills are rightly positioned and the number of leakages in terms of pipelines break and products loss are reduced to the barest minimum.

The GMD said that the ongoing phased rehabilitation of all the state owned refineries would be given an accelerated vigour with the aim of reducing petroleum products importation into the country, adding that at full capacity, all the refineries could supply only 20 million litres of premium motor spirit otherwise known as petrol on a daily basis.

‘Refineries Will Not Be Sold’

Dr. Kachikwu affirmed that the refineries would not be sold but joint venture partners with established track records of success in refining would be invited to support the running of the refineries in order to ensure efficiency.

He stated that efforts were in top gear to fix all the crude and petroleum products pipelines across Nigeria, stressing that the Nigerian Air Force would be engaged to provide aerial survey of the pipelines, the Nigerian Army Engineering corps to fix and police the pipelines and the Nigerian Navy to provide marine surveillance for the network of pipelines.

A statement by the spokesman of the NNPC said Dr. Kachikwu commended the NNPC’s Engineers for the successful execution of the ongoing phased rehabilitation of the refineries while urging them to prepare a replacement programme for obsolete spare parts of all the Corporation’s installations in order to avoid intermittent shut down of facilities.

The Managing Director of the PHRC, Dr. Bafred Audu Enjugu, said the ongoing phased rehabilitation of the company cost a little less than $10 million, adding that the job was holistically carried out by indigenous Engineers without any foreign support.

On her part, the Managing Director of Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Limited, Mrs Esther Namdi-Ogbue, assured the GMD that the Company would think outside the box to provide solutions to all the challenges confronting the Company.

Fuel scarcity worsens in Lagos as NNPC urges Nigerians to shun panic buying

For several weeks now, the petrol scarcity in Lagos state and its environs is yet to abate, forcing motorists to long queues at fuel stations leading to traffic jams across the state.

Part of the challenge observed by Channels Television is that some fuel stations now  sell the product above the recommended pump price of N97 per litre between the ranges of N105 to N120 per litre.

Black marketers across the state have taken advantage of the scarcity and are now selling fuel in jerry cans at even more expensive prices.

The director of the Department of Petroleum Resources, Mr Austeen Olorunsola, however, said the problem is distribution-induced, which he noted is made worse by the recent vandalisation of Arepo pipeline.

Meanwhile the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has announced that it has stepped up the supply and distribution of petroleum products across the country to ensure that motorists do not have to queue at filling stations before buying fuel.

No scarcity threat

A statement signed by the acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of NNPC, Mr. Fidel Pepple, on Wednesday urged motorists to avoid panic buying, affirming that “there is no threat of fuel scarcity.”

“We are working round the clock to surmount the distribution challenge and I can assure that the measures we have put in place are proving effective.”

Giving a breakdown of truck supply figures to Lagos in the last seven days, the statement revealed that a total of 472 trucks have been distributed to filling stations across the state between 17 and 23 October with the daily figures as follows:

Date
Number of Trucks
Equivalent in Litres
23 October, 2012
118
3,916,000
22 October, 2012
62
2,046,000
21 October, 2012
76
2,515,000
20 October, 2012
36
1,188,000
19 October, 2012
46
1,528,000
18 October, 2012
52
1,716,000
17 October, 2012
82
2,754,000
Total
472
15,663,000

“So we call on motorists not to engage in panic buying which can result in unnecessary queues and create hardship for Nigerians, which is what we are trying to avoid” Mr Pepple added.

The NNPC spokesperson further explained that the corporation is “conscious of the high demand for petroleum products that characterizes the end of year season along with its festivities” hence, the increase in the supply and distribution of fuel.

According to him, the NNPC through its subsidiary, the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC), has “intensified efforts at ensuring that fuel is available in every nook and cranny of the country so that people can travel with ease to join their families and friends for the Eid-el-Kabir and other festivals coming up towards the end of the year.”

“We have stepped up fuel supply and distribution across the country to ensure that motorists can drive into any filling station and buy fuel without queuing up, especially during this period of the year that comes with a lot of holidays and festivities. We have increased the number of truck loadings to all the geo-political zones of the country and we hope to sustain this from now through the Sallah holidays to the Christmas and New Year,” he stated.

Also giving a breakdown of truck supply figures to Abuja and environs for the month of October, Pepple said the last few days have witnessed a sharp rise in the number of fuel trucks from an average of 92 to 118, adding that this trend will not only be sustained but improved upon across the country.

The number of fuel trucks supplied to Abuja and environs from the Kaduna Refinery from 15 to 18 October, 2012, according to him, are: 100, 120, 112 and 131 respectively.

“This has greatly improved the situation and the queues have disappeared in Abuja. We are also doing same in Lagos where we have increased trucking from the depots to Lagos and across the Southwest,”

On the diversion of products that was noticed early last week, the NNPC spokesperson stated that “a monitoring committee set up by the PPMC has swung into action tracking the movement of the trucks to stem the trend.”