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'Cooperate with NNPC to sanitize fuel distribution', CSOs tell IPMAN, NUPENG, others

NNPC Towers in Abuja

The Coalition of Civil Society Groups for Good Governance, a key stakeholder in the Nigerian oil and gas industry has called on oil marketers, and distributors to partner with the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd to ensure seamless delivery of petroleum products across the country which is crucial to the country’s quest for energy security.

The CSOs also expressed excitement with the manner the NNPCL is managing fuel supply across the country despite huge limitations.

The coalition leaders said these on Tuesday in a communique at the end of a roundtable meeting of CSOs and other stakeholders in the country’s oils and gas sector held in Lagos.

The coalition was led by the Secretary of the Centre of Public Accountability, Olufemi Lawson; the Director of Activists For Good Governance, Declan Ihekiare; the Head of Campaign Against Impunity, Sina Loremikan; the Director of Transparency Advocacy for Good Governance, Ganzallo Gbenga; the Head of Centre for Promotion of Justice, Abdullahi Alli and the Coordinator of Women Advocates for Good Governance, Aisha Kewulere.

Their call was inspired by how the state-owned company is managing the fuel scarcity caused by bad weather.

Queues resurfaced across major cities in Africa’s biggest oil producer, but the NNPCL explained that the scarcity was a result of weather conditions which affected berthing at jetties, truck load-outs, and transportation of products to filling stations, disrupting station supply logistics.
Another issue noted by the NNPCL was the recent flooding of truck routes, which has constrained the movement of PMS from the coastal corridors to the Federal Capital, Abuja.

The company also said that due to the flammability of petroleum products and in compliance with the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) regulations, it was impossible to load petrol during rainstorms and lightning.

The CSOs said in a communique presented after two days of deliberation that it has found that the NNPCL has made efforts to control the disaster that the situation would have caused.

Lawson who spoke for the coalition said, “We commend the Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), particularly the Group Chief Executive Officer, Mr Mele Kyari, for their unwavering dedication in managing the complexities associated with the distribution of petroleum products, amidst considerable challenges.

“Their efforts have been pivotal in ensuring a consistent supply of fuel across Nigeria, especially during periods of heightened demand and logistical constraints.
“However, while acknowledging the strides made by NNPCL, we recognize that sustainable solutions to the sector’s challenges require a concerted effort from all stakeholders. We hereby wish to call upon private oil marketers, depot owners, workers, media, civil society, and all participants in the petroleum distribution chain to join hands with NNPCL in a collaborative approach.”

The coalition urged all stakeholders to prioritize national interest, ensuring that efforts are synchronized to overcome obstacles and improve service delivery to every corner of Nigeria.

According to them, the NNPCL’s efforts in maintaining a stable supply of petroleum products nationwide is a testament that the GCEO is working in line with the company’s mandate.

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Lawson said the NNPCL belongs to all Nigerians, adding that its leadership has played a crucial role in delivering value to the nation.

The coordinator noted that since the transition of the NNPCL as a commercial entity empowered by the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, the company has consistently ensured it leads the industry in ensuring profitability, product availability, and making sure investors return to the country.
The CSOs said, “Despite its legal mandate to operate commercially, NNPCL recognises the necessity of ensuring energy sufficiency through a seamless supply of petroleum products across the country.

“This commitment is vital for guaranteeing national energy security.”
The CSOs applauded the NNPCL for intervening in crashing PMS prices and ensuring that its retail stations are the cheapest.

They noted how the NNPCL retail stations have helped to influence price reduction by other players.

The group said, “We acknowledge the challenges posed by volatility in global crude oil prices and market dynamics, which significantly impact the prices of petroleum products. Despite these challenges, NNPCL has consistently intervened to ensure that ordinary Nigerians access Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) at affordable and competitive rates compared to neighboring countries.

“NNPCL has embarked on strategic partnerships, such as the acquisition of OVH downstream assets, aimed at expanding its extensive network of retail stations nationwide. As a result, NNPCL is approaching a significant milestone of capturing approximately 30 percent of the nation’s petroleum downstream retail market.

The CSOs also hailed the sustained collaboration that the NNPCL has maintained with critical stakeholders.
The group said the state-owned company has maintained robust collaborations with key stakeholders in the downstream sector, including the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), the Nigerian Oil Marketers Association, and Petroleum Tankers Drivers (PTD) among others.

The CSOs said, “These partnerships ensure seamless storage, supply, distribution, and retailing of petroleum products across the nation.

“We call for enhanced collaboration among stakeholders to further ensure energy sufficiency for Nigeria.”

They called for continued vigilance and collaboration among all stakeholders to achieve a sustainable and energy-secure Nigeria.

 

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