The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the House of Representatives have assured Nigerians that there will be no incidence of fuel scarcity during the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari, and the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Downstream, Hon. Abdullahi Mahmud Gaya, gave the assurance in Lagos during an inspection tour of the newly rehabilitated Ijegun-Egba access road.
The road project was funded by the Satellite petroleum product depot owners operating in the community to help alleviate the plight of the residents and also ease movements of petroleum products in and out of the community.
Speaking to reporters during the tour, Kyari, who led the inspection team, said there is over 2.6 billion litres of petrol in stock and that can carry Nigerians throughout the festive seasons. He allayed fear of any scarcity of fuel arising from distribution glitch, saying the Corporation has a robust supply plan to make sure such does not occur.
Kyari said: “We have over 2.6 billion litres of product in tank and in marine in the country, PMS (petrol) in particular. We have a robust supply plan that stretches well across the Christmas period and into the New Year and actually forever. Our plans are robust, so we have no fear whatsoever of any supply disruption or distribution recession and Nigerians will go to Christmas peacefully.”
He said the era of sharp practices by unscrupulous persons in the supply and distribution activities has gone, adding “I have never seen this level of alignment of stakeholders as we see today and I know that those sharp practices of the past are gone for good.
“That’s why we are talking to our partners, the deport owners and every stakeholder, and they have assured us that nothing like that will happen.”
Commenting on the intervention by depot owners on the Ijegun Road, the NNPC chief stated that the intervention has brought respite to the people of the area.
He said: “Definitely respite has come. The depot owners in particular were able to pool their resources together to fix this road through the Nigerian Army Corps of Engineers and they are doing an excellent job and the result will be that there will be free movement of trucks out of this location to locations all over the country.
“And we are practically here to tell them thank you and to tell them this effort will not go unnoticed. And of course, in a larger context, the entire country is grateful to this deport owners and the Nigerian Army of Engineers, and of course, we are also collaborating. There is a wider engagement of all stakeholders including NNPC, the Federal Ministry of Works, the Deport Owners, the Lagos State Government to make sure that we have a lasting solution to this. But in the meantime, I think we have done a good job on this, and I believe we have this palliative situation that will make us deliver products to our locations,” adding that up to 20 million litres of product are loaded out of from the Satellite Ijegun depots every day.
The Chairman, Ijegun-Egba, Satellite Tank Farm Owners Association and Managing Director, Emadeb Energy, Mr. Debo Olujimi, expressed his satisfaction with the level of support and collaboration from the NNPC and other stakeholders in ensuring the challenges are addressed.
He said: “We are very happy as depot owners. A combination of all the depots is close to 600 million litres, and as I speak to you, on the average, we are doing between 18 and 20 million litres daily. The collaboration in terms of what we need, in terms of support, we are already getting it from the NNPC, the Lagos State Government and every stakeholder.
“The way things are going, for the end of the year, there will strictly be robust and 24 hours operations out of here. Where we have issues on the road, the Lagos State in combination with the Federal Government and NNPC here are already taking care of it. Going forward, we can only assure the residents and all the stakeholders within Ijegun that everything here will be smooth and that their lives are safe and secured”.
The House of Representatives committee on Downstream said: “We assure Nigerians, we will make sure that we do everything possible to make things very easy for Nigerians in this festive season”.