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Fuel Scarcity To Ease Next Week- MOMAN

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Some independent marketers of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS),
otherwise called petrol, are selling the products above the official
pump price and ex-depot price as queues in filling stations across
the country worsen, THISDAY has gathered.
However, the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria
(MOMAN) is certain that normalcy will return to oil distribution
by the time the first set of fuel cargoes land in the country next
weekend.
The worsening scarcity of petrol, it was learnt, followed the initial
delay of the release of fuel import allocation to the Nigerian
National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Oil Marketing
and Trading (OM & T) companies by the Ministry of Petroleum
Resources, through the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory
Agency (PPPRA).
The development has led to a hike in the ex-depot price to between
N93 per litre and N94.50 in most depots, fueling concerns that some
marketers, who are still selling at official price of N97 at filling
stations, may have adjusted their pumps, thereby short-changing
motorists.
THISDAY gathered that many independent marketers, especially
those at the outskirts of the major cities sell at between N110 and
N130 per litre at filling stations.
Investigations also revealed that some independent marketers within
the metropolis hoard the products and sell only at night above the
official pump price.
Speaking on the worsening supply situation, the Executive
Secretary of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria
(MOMAN), Mr. Thomas Olawore, told THISDAY yesterday
that the current crisis was caused by the initial delay in the release
of the import allocations to marketers.
He predicted that the scarcity would worsen in days ahead until
the marketers, who were given allocations start bringing their
cargoes into the country by next weekend.
“The current scarcity will be worse in few days to come because it
takes between two to three weeks to bring cargoes into the country.
That was why we told them (PPPRA) to give us allocation on
time. On our part, we will utilise whatever products the NNPC
is giving us and distribute them efficiently. We are also trying to
land our first cargo by next weekend,” he said.
He exonerated the major marketers from the accusation of
hoarding products and selling above official price, saying the major
marketers do not engage in profiteering and other forms of
malpractices.
“We do not encourage hoarding but when there is serious shortage
of supply, there are certain things you cannot control. It is not right
for any marketer to buy products from the NNPC at normal price
and sell above official price,” he added. The PPPRA had earlier
released the first quarter 2014 fuel import allocations to the
NNNPC and the private marketers, raising hopes that the weeks
of scarcity have ended.
However, contrary to the impression created by the marketers that
their allocations for the fourth quarter 2013 expired on December
31, 2013, the allocations actually covered January 2014.
Though the approval of the import allocation is shrouded in secrecy
as the PPPRA do not publicly release the list of successful
marketers, a source at the agency, who sighted the document, told
THISDAY that over 30 private marketers were given
allocations.
He listed some of the private marketers to include Masters Energy
Oil and Gas Limited, MRS Oil and Gas, Heyden Petroleum,
Techno Oil Limited, NIPCO Plc, Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc,
Forte Oil Plc, Conoil Plc, Oando Plc, Folawiyo Oil and Gas,
and Total Nigeria Plc.

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