Filling stations in many part of Lagos and Abuja have defied the federal government’s directive to sell premium motor spirit (PMS) also known as petrol at the approved pump price of N165 per litre, even as scarcity persists.
LEADERSHIP checks reveal that fuel still sells between N180 and N200 in some parts of Lagos state as some fueling stations remained adamant, insisting that they are lifting above the approved price.
Recall that the federal government had on Monday mandated fuel marketers reiterated that the approved pump price of petrol remains N165 per litre as stipulated in the petroleum product pricing template.
The government had also advised Nigerians against panic buying of PMS, also known as petrol, saying that the country currently had over 2 billion litres of PMS in various depots.
This is as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and Association of Distributors and Transporters of Petroleum Products (ADITOP) have appealed to their members not to sell fuel above the government approved price of N165 per litre.
Also, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, (MOMAN) yesterday called for the full deregulation of the petroleum downstream sector and full implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, given the current state of government
finances and unpredictable international supply shortages.
At Total and Mobil fueling stations around Aftomedia and Okokomaiko axis of Lagos, a litre of fuel was sold for between N185 to N200 in adherence to the directives by the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) that removed the cap on the N165 per litre petrol price.
At the Fadeyi area along Ikorodu road, fuel still sells at N165/ltr to motorists who were seen in a long queue and tried to outwit one another for a limited supply of the product.
In the area, only one of the four fueling stations sells to everyone while another sells only to touts who in turn, sell in Jerry cans to the needy while the other two stations are closed to business.
In Shomolu, fueling stations closed at noon Monday and only a few reopened around 4 pm and closed not long after again.
Although the queues were minimal and the pump price on the metre was still at N165, one of the fuel attendants at the Conoil filling station, who gave his name as Abu, however, hinted that the per litre price could change at any moment.
Many filling stations owned by independent marketers in Abuja sold the commodity between N200 and N210 per litre.
LEADERSHIP checks also showed that most stations outside the city centre including Nyanya, along Bwari road, Tasha, Idu among others all sold above the approved price.
However, many of the major marketers’ stations that still maintained the approved price had no fuel and there were long queues at the few that had product to sell.
But speaking at a press conference in Abuja yesterday, the IPMAN National President, Chinedu Okoronkwo who said his members earlier briefed him on why the wanted a price hike, added that the Federal Government has released enough fuel from their deport which enable them to maintain the status quo antebellum.
Okoronkwo said they have engaged the services of Benham Group to recover money owed to them for the supply of petroleum products adding that the partnership will help in ending fuel scarcity at the fuel station.
“Our business required technology, that is why we brought a seasoned financial expert and we’ve been able to recover a lot of funds in other countries and Nigeria.
“The incessant mishaps and destruction of trucks on the road, banditry and kidnapping is the reason we are bringing the insurance company to help us. Leaving the risk for the owner of the truck to bear will affect our businesses, “ Okoronkwo said, adding that fuel should be sold at N165 since the government has released fuel from the depot.
“Our members in Lagos were getting the fuel at N170 -N173 that’s why they wanted price increased. It’s only the NNPC that is importing the product. Cost of doing business has changed, so it becomes difficult to sell at N165 per liter. That is why we are thanking the NNPC for bringing the product to N143. So, our members must sell the product at N165 which is the government approved price.
Also speaking, the National President, Association of Distributors and Transporters of Petroleum Products in Nigeria (ADITOP), Alhaji Alhaji Mohammed Lawal Danzaki said Nigerians have been suffering from fuel scarcity because of a lot of problems the association is facing.
“ADITOP and IPMAN are the ones suffering since we need return for our investment. NNPC has done alot to import the product but the main issue is the transportation. We have not been getting our payments. That’s why we engage a financial expert, Benham Group, to recoup our money for Nigerians to get regular supplies in the fuel stations,” Danzaki said.
The chief consultant and the chairman of Benham Group, Dr Maurice Ibe, said the collaboration is to ensure stabilisation of fuel supply at the filling stations.
He said they are doing everything possible to stabilize the activities of the downstream sector and ensure that the product is transported to every nook and cranny of the country.
He said the fuel scarcity at the fuel station is affecting the country’s economy.
“You can’t hold a businessman’s money and expect the business to flourish. So, rescue our members so that they can function very well, “ Ibe added.
Meanwhile, MOMAN declared that PIA implementation clearly remains the most viable long-term solution to the country’s supply and distribution challenges.”
In a virtual conference with the media, chairman of the Association Olumide Adeosun attributed the current petrol queues spreading around the country to supply disruption from the Petroleum Products Marketing Company, PPMC in the last few weeks.
Adeosun, also blamed the situation to distribution challenges created by the unavailability and continuous surge in international prices of Automotive Gas Oil (diesel).
He expressed fears that the current supply framework and government finances cannot guarantee steady and consistent supplies to the country
To resolve all these MOMAN, thus recommended a gradual price deregulation with targeted palliatives (eg. transport and agricultural subsidies) to the public to ease implementation.
However, in the interim, the Association recommended that the current single supplier strategy be reviewed, and that the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, in collaboration with the Ministry of
Finance and other relevant MDAs, should set up a taskforce to immediately focus on increasing diesel supply through accelerated initiatives to increase local modular refining capacity.
This move will tackle the supply and distribution challenges, he said.
Adeosun also said the MOMAN had recommended a phased rehabilitation of existing NNPC refineries to hasten supply of middle distillates (AGO & ATK).
He said MOMAN recognizes and closely associates with the need to ease challenges with respect to high energy and transportation costs occasioned by extraneous circumstances.
Also he assured that MOMAN shall continually do its best to distribute petrol to its customers across the country and keep exploring opportunities to partner with industry stakeholders but urged the Authority, and the Government to ensure the sustainability and institutionalization of a viable petroleum downstream sector in Nigeria.
While empathising with its customers as the nation grapple with recurrent scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) in various parts of the Country, Adeosun, disclosed that the gap was noticed in April when Lagos Jerry was supplied with 438,000 metric tons, MT, of petrol and down to 213,100 MT, and as at 20th of June it went down to 140,000MT.
He said that MOMAN members are working with the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, NNPC/PPMC, NARTO and other industry stakeholders to make the product (petrol) available at the pumps and eliminate the queues as quickly as possible.
Adeosun, however disclosed that 64,000 MT of products are being discharged in Lagos curently but marketers require consistent back to back product supply to end the crises.