The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation has assured Nigerians of its desire to provide a lasting solution to the current fuel scarcity in the country, reiterating that the government was keen on alleviating the problems occasioned by the scarcity.
“We assure that the Government and NNPC are not taking the patience of Nigerians for granted,” Garba Deen Mohammed, general manager, public affairs division of the NNPC said on Friday.
“We urge Nigerians to continue to be patient because the difficulties being experienced as a result of the situation will soon be alleviated.”
Mohammed, in an earlier statement, cleared the air on the rumours that the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, had said the fuel scarcity would only end in May. He claimed that the minister, who spoke to newsmen after leading members of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG and Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, to a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari was misrepresented by media reports.
“Apparently the State House correspondents misunderstood the Minister’s explanation and reported the Minister as saying that fuel shortages will linger for the next two months. That was not what the Minister said or meant,” Mohammed said.
He said the Corporation’s immediate concern was to ensure that premium motor spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, was available through the interventions and processes put in place so that the queues will disappear. He noted that the NNPC has taken deliveries of the product which it will distribute across the country.
He said, “As at 1600hrs of today (Friday), one PMS cargo containing 42 million litres has completely discharged.Two more PMS cargoes with a combined ‘Remaining on Board’ (ROB) of 44 million litres are currently discharging. Another PMS cargo containing 44 million litres is berthed and awaiting discharge.
“We have enough products lined up to ensure that the supply gap which created the problem is bridged. In order to ensure effective distribution, we are working collaboratively with IPMAN, MOMAN and over 1,000 NNPC staff, nationwide.”
Mohammed further said the NNPC “is working to put in place machineries to ensure that our refineries are fixed and working optimally” as part of its long-term solutions to the problem of fuel scarcity. He also assured that Direct Sale Direct Purchase (DSDP) arrangement for crude would commence in the first week of April.
He said that President Muhammadu Buhari has given his support to increase the crude supply to NNPC to ensure local sufficiency of products.