NNPC-station

Following the lingering fuel scarcity in the country, the Director

General of the State Security Service (SSS) Thursday summoned the

Managing Director, Pipeline, Product Marketing Company (PPMC) Prince

Haruna Momoh and the leadership of the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and

Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) with a viewing to resolving the

leadership crisis in Independent Marketers Association Nigeria

(IPMAN), it was learnt Friday.

Addressing journalists in Abuja, the NUPENG President, Comrade Igwe

Achise, said that due to the SSS intervention, there is a high hope of

resolving the crisis between now and Tuesday.

He confirmed that ?after the intervention of the MD of PPMC, the

Directorate of Security Service (DSS)- DG SSS and we have been able to

look at these issues critically again, where we have been assured that

the lingering crisis in IPMAN will be given the utmost emergency

attention needed to resolve those leadership issues as soon as

possible and we are believing that between now,  Monday, Tuesday, this

issue of the leadership will be resolved.

?We have also read through the media that Aminu the former president

has finally moved out of office and decided to go and form an

association that does not have bearing with the judgement given by

competent court of jurisdiction.?

He explained that the crisis in IPMAN was due to the movement by the

outgoing President Alhaji Aminu Abdulkadir to continue staying in

office despite a court judgement that has pronounced the emergence of

his successor.

According to him,  the union withdrew its services from the Nigeria

Independent Petroleum Company (NIPCO) because its owners  Independent

IPMAN were involved in fraudulent demand for fuel subsidy claim.

He noted that: ?If that crisis persists, there is no need we keep our

services in NIPCO since IPMAN is the  major owner of the investment of

the commercial out fit. I think that will be a big way of addressing

these challenges.?

Asked whether NUPENG cannot sanction IPMAN for the allegedly insisting

on collecting fuel subsidy money without supply, Achise said :?NIPCO

example is part of those sanctions we can take in withdrawing our

services from the depot if found that they are having some fraudulent

activities at the ongoing in their environment . The allegation is

true.?

Commenting on why it is scarce, the NUPENG boss explained that in as

much as petroleum products are imported, products are bound to be

scarce.

He revealed that since the refineries are not functioning, the the

nation is at the mercy of the marketers, who also own the private

depots to whom the Federal Government has assigned to import petroleum

products.

His words: ?Petroleum products are scarce because  Nigeria is still

depending majorly on importation of petroleum products. And that

importation is mortgaged into the hands of marketers, who are also

private depot owners and importers. Our refineries are not

functioning. They are epileptic in production and that cannot sustain

this country. And that is why we find ourselves were we are today in

term of the scarcity.?

Asked whether deregulation of the refineries is not the best option,

Achise said that to deregulate the downstream of the oil and gas

sector is a must.

He however added a caveat, that the Federal Government would not be

fair to the citizenry to deregulate the sector with reliance on fuel

importation.

According to him, ?what is affecting our refineries today is because

of the system that is surrounding the refinery operations.?

Continuing, he said ?we need to do a turnaround maintenance of the

refineries for us to make it work effectively. The Port-Harcourt

Refineries we agreed on this last year with the Ministry of Petroleum.

It failed. The next one, he said by first quarter of next year picked

up. First quarter has gone and it has gone. So, must we continue to

remain in this kind of shadow??

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