The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) on Monday called on the Federal Government to adopt a dual price regime for marketers.
Alhaji Debo Ahmed, the Chairman of IPMAN Western Zone, who made the call in Lagos, said that the regime required that NNPC retail outlets sell at N145, while other marketers sell at their own price.
“During a recent Senate committee meeting held with stakeholders in the oil industry, one of the suggestions from the Minster of State for Petroleum, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, was the introduction of dual price regime. “If this regime can be adopted, it may be a way of solving some of our problems,’’ Ahmed said.
He claimed that presently the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) could not meet up with the nation’s petroleum consumption demand.
The IPMAN boss also suggested total deregulation of the downstream sector.
Ahmed, who spoke on the ongoing fuel scarcity in the country, further claimed that NNPC/PPMC depots within the western zone had no adequate petrol stock to meet the demand of motorists.
The IPMAN boss noted that IPMAN members in the zone were receiving 30 percent of products supplied by the NNPC/PPMC, while 20 percent went to Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria and 50 percent to NNPC retail outlets.
“The NNPC management should increase petrol allocation to IPMAN members rather than allocate excess products to NNPC retailers who have less than 25 outlets within Lagos.
“IPMAN has over 2,500 members and over 500 outlets across the South-West region, yet we are supplied only 30 percent of petrol; this is against the 60 percent we agreed on with the NNPC.
“The situation is so bad that many of our members who are not able to get product supply have had to shut their filling stations,’’ he said.
He also complained that although private depot owners (DAPPMA) were meant to sell the petrol at a controlled price of N133.28k, “they are selling between N160 and N162 above the regulated price.”
The IPMAN zonal chairman, therefore, urged the Federal Government to intervene and compel private depot owners to sell at approved price to marketers.
He further urged the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to sanction defaulting depot owners:
“DPR only descends on independent marketers by closing their stations, yet, one can only sell what one buys; we are business people, for how long do we close down our stations since we have financial obligations to the banks?
“Or has the Federal Government deregulated without the public being aware?’’
Ahmed reiterated that the dual price regime would solve some of the marketers’ problems.
Amaka E. Nliam