The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, (IPMAN) has called on the management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, (NNPCL) to investigate the activities of private depots owned by members of the Depots and Petroleum Products Marketers Association, (DAPPMA) over their role in the ongoing fuel scarcity.
National President of IPMAN, Debo Ahmed and National Publicity Secretary, Chinedu Ukadike, made the observation in a joint statement yesterday, where they expressed concerns over the sale of petroleum products to members of IPMAN above the NNPCL approved template of N148.00 which was inimical to the survival of industry.
While agreeing that its members would stick to government’s approved price of N165.00 per litre at retail outlets across the country, Ahmed called on the NNPCL to save IPMAN members from the excesses of (DAPPMA).
He said: “The government is doing nothing about the private depots that are violating the system by selling higher. IPMAN members had suffered a lot in the hands of private depot owners. We appreciate the efforts of NNPC to make product available but, we have really suffered a lot of setback based on the cost of diesel. We aren’t saying there is non availability of petroleum products, but what is available isn’t sufficient . The cost of diesel has also increased.
“These two factors have led to profiteering at tank farms, whereby marketers buy petroleum products at the rate of N169. 00, to N170.00 above government controlled pump price. “This non-availability has led to profiteering from the hands of Products Depots Operations along the coastal areas. We are also finding it difficult to move products from Lagos- Kano- Kaduna since we are heavily dependent on PDOs since they are located along the coastal areas. So, after looking at all these factors, it cost close to N700,000 to move petroleum products from Lagos to Kano since we are at the mercy of the PDOs.
“It is becoming increasingly difficult for marketers to sell petroleum products with this little margin. It is easy for marketers to move products from NNPCL depots to sell at N165.00 but since we aren’t getting at N148.00, which is the government template for private depot tank farm owners to sell to marketers, but we are getting at N160.00, there is no way a marketer will use N5.00 to sell petroleum products. It isn’t viable, considering the cost of maintenance of the filling station and also cost of fund. A litre of Automotive Gas Oil, (diesel) is very huge and we are borrowing these funds from commercial banks. We want to use this opportunity to tell NNPC on behalf of marketers to ensure that we have sufficient products.